Jacob “Jake” Franklin Butcher, Maynardville

Jacob “Jake” Franklin Butcher passed away on July 19, 2017 at the age of 81 after a courageous battle with cancer.
Jake was born May 8, 1936 to Cecil H. Butcher, Sr. and Kate Walters Butcher in the rural town of Maynardville, Tennessee. Jake attended Maynardville High School and later the University of Tennessee and Hiwassee College. After college, he joined the United States Marine Corps serving primarily in Korea, Japan and Marine Corps Air Station El Toro. Jake always held the Marine Corps close to his heart. He married Broadway actress and Oak Ridge native Sonya Wilde in 1962 and together they had four children, Maria (Randy) Loyd, Scarlett (Tim) Current, Brad (Leigh Ann) Butcher and Jason (Ashley) Butcher. Jake and Sonya also have 8 grandchildren, Kendall Loyd White, Austin Loyd, McCall Current, Joshua Current, Colby Butcher, Katelyn Butcher, Jace Butcher and Olivia Butcher, and 2 great grandchildren, Abigail and Judah White. During his long life, he treasured his family and they all adored him.

In 1961, he and his brother, C.H. Butcher, Jr., founded Butcher Insurance Company and then in 1963 Jake founded Butcher Oil Company. In 1965, he moved Butcher Oil Company from Maynardville to Clinton, TN and changed the name to Bull Run Oil Company where it became one of the largest Amoco Jobbers in Tennessee serving area’s from Sevierville to Carthage, TN. With the help of his father, Jake and C.H. purchased First National Bank of Lake City in 1968. In 1970, the bank was opened in Oak Ridge and Clinton and the name changed to City & County (C&C) Bank. In 1975, Jake purchased controlling interest in Hamilton National Bank of Knoxville and changed the name to United American Bank. With the help of several Knoxville business leaders including Pat Wood, United American Plaza was constructed and became Knoxville’s tallest building. In 1978, Jake’s United American Bank moved in to its new headquarters at United American Plaza and went on to become east Tennessee’s largest bank, accounting for many of the business loans in Knoxville. Jake, with his love for the people of Tennessee, ran for governor in 1974 and was the Democratic Nominee for Governor in 1978. Other political involvement included being a member of the Democratic National, Finance & Inaugural Committees (1976-1980). In 1975, Jake was asked by retired Air Force Colonel Stewart Evans, King Cole and then Mayor Kyle Testerman to be the Chairman of the International Energy Exposition (World’s Fair) in Knoxville. The 1982 World’s Fair and its resounding success was one of Jake’s most cherished accomplishments and memories.

Jake was also involved in several civic & charitable organizations including Chairman of the Tennessee Chapter of The American Cancer Society; Board of Directors for the Greater Knoxville Chamber of Commerce; Chairman of the East Tennessee Heart Association; Board Member of the Holston Conference of The United Methodist Church; Member of First United Methodist Church in Oak Ridge and later a member of First United Methodist Church in Canton, GA.
In more recent years, he continued his career in sales. He was a true patriot for his country and his beloved Tennessee and was a loyal friend to many. He was unconditionally supportive of his family and loved nothing more than to spend time with his children and grandchildren. His charisma and home town charm never faded and was a champion of optimism, positivity and generosity.

He is preceded in death by his father and mother Cecil H. Butcher, Sr. and Kate Walters Butcher and his beloved brother, C.H. Butcher, Jr. Jake is survived by his wife Sonya Wilde Butcher of Canton, GA, sons, daughters and grandchildren.
Pallbearers:
Grandsons: Austin Loyd, Colby Butcher, Josh Current, Jace Butcher
Sons-in-Law: Randy Loyd, Tim Current
Family friend: Allen “Red Dog” Hicks
Nephew: Cecil H (Butch) Butcher III
Honorary Pallbearers:
Karl Schledwitz, Taft Butcher, Gene Cook, Rodney Holbrook, John Holden, Raymond Lacy, Bob McKamey, Jimmy Naifeh, Kevin Riggs, Ronald Scott, L.E. Butch Smith, Kevin Tucker, Fred Simmons, Rob Woodson, Frank Barker, Fred Hurst, Bill Ramsey, Johnny Majors, Chris Pracht, Brad Walker

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, July 29th at 2pm at The First United Methodist Church, 1350 Oak Ridge Turnpike, Oak Ridge, TN with Rev. John Collett officiating. The family will receive friends immediately following the service. Graveside Service will be on Sunday, July 30th at 12pm at Oak Ridge Memorial Park, 1501 Bethel Valley Road, Oak Ridge, TN 37830. In lieu of flowers: Donations accepted in Jake’s name to the Marine’s Toys for Tots Program or The Mission of Hope helping the families of rural Appalachia. Holley Gamble Funeral Home in Clinton is in charge of all arrangements. Holleygamble.com

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