W. E. Estel Underwood, 83, Coalfield

It is with great sadness that we pass along the news of the passing of W. E. (Estel) Underwood today, August 4, 2023.  Estel or better known as Mr. Underwood, to the thousands of kids that he either coached, taught or was their principal at Coalfield School where the campus of the school is now named after him. Estel was also a Director of Music first at Pleasant Grove Baptist Church in Coalfield, then at Glenwood Baptist Church in Oak Ridge up until his retirement due to health reasons.  Estel was a bass singer with the Bread of Life Quartet as well. 

The family will receive friends on Sunday at Glenwood Baptist Church, 200 N. Alabama Road, Oak Ridge, from 2pm – 4pm, with funeral service to follow. The burial will be in the Davis Cemetery in Coalfield on Monday at 1pm.

Sharp Funeral Home in Oliver Springs is in charge of the arrangements, which are incomplete at this time, for the family of W.E. (Estel) Underwood.


William Estel Underwood, 83, died August 4th, at his home in Coalfield. Mr. Underwood was preceded in death by his sisters Wanda Underwood and Wilda York (John), brother Leslie Underwood, Parents Estel and Ella Underwood, and son Bradley Wayne Underwood. 

He is survived by Sandy, his wife of forty years, daughter Sherri Turpin and husband Lee of Knoxville; grandson Luke Turpin and wife Morgan of Richmond, Virginia; Granddaughter Emmie of Nashville; Son Chris Whaley and wife Cindy, grandson Jonathan Whaley and granddaughter Tori Whaley, all of Harriman, brother in law Leroy Turner and wife Wanda of Wartburg; brothers in law Jerry, Randy, and Tony Luffman, all of Harriman; sisters in law Cheryl Jones of Goodlettsville, Tennessee, and Angie Butler (Tommy) of Pinson, Alabama. In addition, Mr. Underwood is survived by many special friends and church family from Glenwood Baptist Church in Oak Ridge and Pleasant Grove Baptist Church and other community churches in Coalfield, Oak Ridge, and Morgan County.

Mr. Underwood was a 1958 graduate of Sunbright High School. He also attended Tennessee Tech and began teaching at Coalfield School in 1960, where he taught math and science for ten years. After completing his B.S and M.S degrees at the University of Tennessee, he served as Principal at Coalfield School for an additional twenty years, retiring in 1991. The campus at Coalfield School is named in his honor.

Mr. Underwood served as minister of music for 25 years, worked with the children and youth choirs, and taught Sunday School at Pleasant Grove Baptist Church. Mr. Underwood was choir director for children and adults at Glenwood Baptist Church until retiring in 2018. Mr. Underwood also sang bass with the Bread of Life southern gospel quartet for over 25 years.

He loved people and people loved him! We all love him and miss him, but we are rejoicing that he is in Heaven with Jesus!

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations for Mr. Underwood may be given to any of the following: Glenwood Baptist Church, 200 N. Alabama Rd, Oak Ridge, TN 37830; Pleasant Grove Baptist Church, 1306 Fairview Rd, Harriman, TN 37748; Estel and Sandy Underwood Scholarship Endowment, c/o Roane St. Foundation,276 Patton Ln, Harriman, TN 37748; Coalfield School, 1720 Coal Hill Rd, Coalfield, TN 37719.

Visitation will be from 2-4 pm on Sunday, August 6, 2023 at Glenwood Baptist Church in Oak Ridge. A funeral service will begin at 4 pm. A graveside service will be at 1 pm on Monday, August 7, 2023 at Davis Cemetery in Coalfield.

Premier Sharp Funeral Home is proud to be serving the Underwood family. www.Sharpfh.com.

About Brad Jones

Brad is the Owner/Operator of BBB TV 12, and has been with the company since August of 1996. Brad is a 1987 graduate of Coalfield High School and a 1995 graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Communications. He won the 1995 broadcast production student of the year award. Brad worked at Shop at Home, Inc. a home shopping network that was located in Knoxville, TN from 1993 - 1995 and then at Via TV (RSTV, Inc.) from 1995 - 1996. After some freelance work in Nashville, Brad joined the BBB Communications staff in August of 1996. A short stint at WVLT TV as a news photographer was in 2001, but he continued to work at BBB TV as well. Brad is married to Nicole Jenkins Jones, a 1990 graduate of Oak Ridge High School, who works at Oak Ridge Gastroenterology and Associates in Oak Ridge. They have 3 kids, Trevor Bogard, 27, Chandler 22, and Naomi 13. On December 12, 2013 they welcomed their first grandchild, Carter Ryan Bogard. Brad is also the assistant boys basketball coach at Coalfield High School for the past 11 years. In 2013-14 the Yellow Jackets won their first district title since 1991 and just the 4th in school history.

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