Otto Ernest Unger, 93

Otto Ernest Unger, 93, slipped quietly from this world to be with his God on July 23, 2022. Otto was born March 10, 1929, in Oakdale, Tennessee, the youngest of 10 children (two of whom died in infancy) born to Curtis Gustavus and Arlevia Miller Unger. He loved the foothills of the Smoky Mountains and was never far from home. The only exception was when he served his country in the Navy after he graduated from Oakdale High School. His most significant duty assignment was serving as a Radio Mechanic II at the U.S. Naval Communications Station in Guam, MI (Marianas Islands). After he returned from his assignment in Guam, he received training in electronics at the Coyne School of Electricity in Chicago. He then returned to East Tennessee, married Barbara Tharp on February 4, 1956, and began working for Union Carbide at the K-25 plant in Oak Ridge.

He and Barbara built a house in Oliver Springs where they raised their two girls. One of his oft-repeated phrases was, “It’s another beautiful day in East Tennessee”. Otto was a member of the New York Avenue Church of Christ where he served as deacon for many years. He was in attendance pretty much any time the doors were open whether it was for worship or a potluck event. He was also no stranger to the quilting circle that gathered; a group that his wife attended prior to her passing. He was a student of the Bible and worked to learn ancient Greek to be able to better understand the writings of the New Testament. He enjoyed nature and many were the recipients of his hand-made pressed flower greeting cards. He also loved photography and all kinds of music but was especially fond of the Hawaiian steel guitar and the songs of Nana Mouskouri.

Otto was preceded in death by his wife, Barbara; brothers Melvin and Bill; and, sisters Anna, Vera, Lois, and Hermenia.

He is survived by his sister Lillian Brown, of Louisville, Kentucky. He leaves two daughters, Elaine Pierce and her husband, Mark Pierce, of Merriam, Kansas, and Janna White and her husband, James C. White, of Lincoln, New Hampshire; two granddaughters, Marlena Pierce and Callie Pierce; three grandsons, Dakota White, Tristan White, and Colton White; several nieces and nephews. He will be missed by his family and a host of friends.

A Celebration of Life will be held at the New York Avenue Church of Christ, 219 New York Ave,
Oak Ridge at 10:00 am, on Saturday, July 30, 2022. A live stream of the service will be available on the church’s FB page (search NYA church of Christ Oak Ridge TN ). Public viewing with the family will be held at the Weatherford Mortuary,158 S Jefferson Cir, Oak Ridge from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm on Friday, July 29, 2022.

To sign the online register book or for more information, please visit:

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Otto, please visit our floral store.

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