Christine McCann Vespie, age 93, passed from this life on May 17, 2023, into the presence of Jesus Christ where there is fullness of joy and at his right hand are pleasures forevermore. She is preceded in death by her husband, Harl; son, Randall; parents, Ed and Myrtle McCann; her beloved sister, Cora McCann. She was also preceded in death by dear friends, Jeanette Long and June Lloyd. June’s sisters were all very close as friends and family to Christine, whom they call called “DeeDee.”
She is survived by her children: daughter, Joan (Edd) Diden; sons, Ken (Gail) Vespie, Wayne (Kay) Vespie, and Stan Vespie. Daughter-in-law Kim Vespie. She is also survived by fifteen grandchildren: Phil Vespie, Kathy Mynatt, Matthew Vespie, Emily Gibson, Tim Vespie, Julie Shelton, Katie Vespie, B J Diden, Miriam Allman, David Vespie, Paul Vespie, Jonathan Vespie, Adam Vespie, step-grandchildren Ashlyn Turner and Allyson Davis, 27 great-grandchildren, and 11 great-great-grandchildren. They were all dear to her heart. She just found out before her death that she has one more great-grandson on the way in October with hopes he might be born October 19th!
Christine was born at the foot of Wartburg Mountain just off Montgomery Road on October 19, 1929. When she was 5, her Grandpa Newberry took her and Cora to Sunday School. They climbed up Wartburg Mountain one Sunday to attend First Baptist Church which was located at that time on the site of the current Nazarene Church property. The people took in the “little girls” and loved them so that Christine and Cora never wanted to miss a Sunday.
The family moved up to the top of the mountain across from the Lutheran Church when Christine was 14. They continued to go to church at First Baptist. Christine was saved in 1942 but waited to get baptized until her beloved cousin June Lloyd was saved, too. And they were baptized together at Trenton Street Baptist Church in Harriman. Her Dad, Ed, and sister, Cora, were both saved during a revival in 1946 and baptized in the Emory River. Christine told the story of her dad’s conversion by saying that he was holding onto the pews, and she went back and held out her hand and said, “Won’t you come, too?” Ed McCann was saved because Christine invited him to the Lord.
Christine loved her church. It is where she raised her five children. She served as pianist, organist, church clerk, and church secretary. She was there “every time the doors were opened” to support the ministry and to make sure her “youngins” were there too. She was a member of Tom’s Creek Baptist Church in Linden, TN where her son is pastor. She lived in Linden from 2014-2017 before returning to her home in Wartburg.
Christine worked for the United States Post Office for more than 30 years. She served as a clerk in Wartburg before being promoted to Postmaster in Elgin and then retiring as Postmaster in Lancing in 1992. She often talked fondly of the people she served and the good people with whom she worked.
Christine loved the Lord God with all her heart. Her children rise and call her blessed (Proverbs 31:28). She believed in the Lord Jesus Christ as her Savior and served Him as her Lord. She was not ashamed of the gospel of Christ (Romans 1:12). In the early days, she and her family spent much time with another great friend Harry Fritts. He and his sister, Henrietta Mathis, taught Christine how to play the piano and organ. She served the Lord in many churches playing hymns for people to worship the Lord. In her later years, she still played the piano almost daily to worship the Lord alone and thank Him for all His blessings to her life. Four generations of her family have heard her play. If the Lord tarries many will continue to hear her play her harp (piano) for the Lord just like King David, “the sweet psalmist of Israel”.
Christine was a friend of many preachers and maintained contact even years after they left First Baptist (Jim Robertson and Gerald Bland). She was also a friend of missionaries many of whom stayed in her home. Mike Roberts of Vietnam was her favorite. Christine was the most generous person anyone could know. She could take her ‘widow’s mite’ and multiply blessings to her children and all her generations of grandchildren. If you are a great-grandkid and came to Mamaw’s you got $20 without fail. As long as she could, she’d take them to Dollar General to spend it. She supported missions, prison ministries, buying Bibles for those who couldn’t afford them, and, of course, her church. Souls will continue to be saved for years to come because of the seed she has sown.
We know the Lord has welcomed her with open arms. We will see her soon. We “sorrow not as others which have no hope” for we know that the Lord is coming soon, and he will bring those who sleep in Jesus with him. Then “we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so, shall we ever be with the Lord.” This is our comfort in the loss of one of the greatest women the world has ever known.
Visitation will be on Saturday, May 20, 2023, from 4-5:00 pm at Jackson Funeral Home and Cremation 51 Edmonds Drive Oliver Springs, with Funeral to follow officiated by her Son Pastor Stan Vespie.
Interment will be at Wartburg Cemetery 419 Kingston St. Wartburg, Tn. 37887