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Kiser-Rose Hill Funeral Home

125 Idletime Drive, Greeneville, TN

OBITUARY

Richard M. Cox

April 6, 1938June 23, 2020
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Richard M. Cox Sr, 82, of Mosheim, went home to the Lord Tuesday at UT Medical Center in Knoxville.

He was retired from BASF Corporation in Lowland, Tennessee after 32 years.

Richard was a member of Highland Baptist Church in Whitesburg, Tennessee.

Survivors include his wife of 57 years: Patsy Thornburg Cox: his children and their spouses, respectively: Rickey and Joni Cox, Jamey and Paula Cox, John and Natalie Cox and Michelle (Cox) and Shane Bales; grandchildren: Tara (Cox) and Jonathan Rohrer, Jessica Cox, Abbey Cox, Nathaniel Cox, Andrew Cox, Sabrina Cox, Levi Cox and Parker Bales; two sisters: Mary Fred (Cox) and CR Baskette and Betty Ann (Cox) Lewis; two sisters-in-law: Yvonne Tipton and Donna and Buddy Cutshaw; and several cousins, nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents: Mary Sue Ricker Cox and Fred Cox; aunts and uncles: Robert Ricker, Ruth (Ricker) Price, Onie Cox and Mary Robert (Cox) Bailey.

The family will receive friends Monday, June 29, from 2 pm – 4 pm and 6 pm – 8 pm with the service at 8 pm at Kiser-Rose Hill Funeral Home with Pastor Terry Bunch officiating.

Interment will be on Tuesday, June 30 at 11 am in GreeneLawn Memory Gardens. Family and friends are asked to meet at 10 am Tuesday at Kiser-Rose Hill Funeral Home to go in procession to the cemetery.

Pallbearers will be Bill Bailey, Gary Bailey, Parker Bales, Shane Bales, AL Hall, Stanley Tipton.

  • FAMILY

  • Patsy Thornburg Cox, Wife of 57 years
  • Rickey Cox (Joni), Son
  • Jamey Cox (Paula), Son
  • John Cox (Natalie), Son
  • Michelle (Cox) Bales (Shane), Daughter
  • Tara (Cox) Rohrer (Jonathan), Grandchild
  • Jessica Cox, Grandchild
  • Abbey Cox, Grandchild
  • Nathaniel Cox, Grandchild
  • Andrew Cox, Grandchild
  • Sabrina Cox, Grandchild
  • Levi Cox, Grandchild
  • Parker Bales, Grandchild
  • Mary Fred (Cox) Baskette (CR), Sister
  • Betty Ann (Cox) Lewis, Sister
  • Yvonne Tipton, Sister-in-law
  • Donna Cutshaw (Buddy), Sister-in-law
  • Mary Sue Ricker Cox and Fred Cox, Parents (deceased)
  • Robert Ricker, Uncle (deceased)
  • Ruth (Ricker) Price, Aunt (deceased)
  • Onie Cox, Aunt (deceased)
  • Mary Robert (Cox) Bailey, Aunt (deceased)
  • He also leaves several cousins, nieces, and nephews to cherish his memory.
  • PALLBEARERS

  • Bill Bailey
  • Gary Bailey
  • Parker Bales
  • Shane Bales
  • AL Hall
  • Stanley Tipton

Services

  • Visitation

    Monday, June 29, 2020

  • Visitaition

    Monday, June 29, 2020

  • Funeral Service

    Monday, June 29, 2020

Memories

Richard M. Cox

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Barbara Wolfe

June 29, 2020

Richard was a very good man and a faithful church member. He will be really missed by all who knew and loved him. Patsy, I know you will always miss him and the days ahead will be difficult for you. Just know that we love you and are praying that God will give you strength and comfort. My condolences to all the family.

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Biography

When someone is identified as a natural leader, certain images come to mind. First thoughts are of a no-nonsense, tough-minded, dedicated and disciplined person. This description accurately fits Richard M. Cox who was indeed a born manager. He will be remembered as being highly organized, practical and realistic. He was a person who always carried a strong sense of duty with him throughout his life. Possessed with traditional “old school” morals, Richard was an individual who clearly communicated to those around him just who he was and what he was all about. Everyone acquainted with Richard knew him as a well-respected man who was a stable force in his community.

       His parents were Mary Sue Ricker and Fred Cox. Richard was raised in Mosheim, Tennessee. Even as a youngster, Richard learned to be objective and decisive. His faith in the principles of authority and dependability was something that he carried with him throughout his life.

      As a young boy, Richard was able to put his natural abilities to work. He was a bit like the sergeant of the family, helping to make sure that the others did what they should do and that they avoided those things they weren’t supposed to. In other words, he liked to organize and direct. Richard was raised with two siblings. He had two sisters, Mary Fred and Betty Anne. Richard had an inborn appreciation for the order in the family, allowing for the oldest members to be the most respected and to take on the most responsibility. For Richard, this was a natural order of life, one he gladly embraced.

      Richard's matter-of-fact attitude about most things was developed during his childhood. As a young boy, Richard enjoyed being part of teams, and organizations and groups of other kids who shared similar interests. Richard took part in basketball. In his spare time he liked to ride bicycles.

      In school, Richard was as close to being a model student as one could possibly imagine. He sought to achieve perfect attendance in all of his classes. He would eagerly complete his homework, and often put in extra study time when he felt it was necessary. A logical and focused thinker, Richard was always good at following directions and meeting his schedules, whether they were set by his teachers or were self-imposed. Richard’s personal motto could well have been, “Do it right the first time. He enjoyed some courses more than others, having favorite classes and teachers. His favorite class in high school was FFA.

      Richard was sociable and approachable. Because he was always so straightforward in how he approached relationships, friends and family knew that what they saw was always what they got. He enjoyed the camaraderie of being with a group of friends. When Richard was a member of a group, his interaction worked to keep the others grounded. He wasn’t afraid to confront his friends and, when necessary, he challenged them to stick to the task at hand. Those close to Richard came to expect his high standards of performance. While growing up, some of his best friends were Ted Pierce and Max Bales. Later in life, he became friends with Johnny Smelcer, Bill Sauceman, Billy Morelock, and Al Hall.

      An objective and conscientious individual, Richard reveled in the security of his family. On October 19, 1962 Richard exchanged wedding vows with Patsy Marlene Thornburg at a bridge in Loveless, Tennessee. One of Richard’s most endearing qualities was his uncanny ability to remember important dates and anniversaries, and his unending enthusiasm for organizing a celebration for his family and friends.

      Richard was ever watchful of his children. He worried about them and was deeply concerned for their development as they grew up. He maintained a firm hand in their upbringing. Richard would give his stamp of approval to their requests, as long as he could see how they might benefit. He also had the ability to enforce the rules as needed to ensure that his children were properly raised. Richard was blessed with four children, Rickey, Jamey, John, and Michelle. They were also blessed with eight grandchildren, Tara, Jessica, Abbey, Parker, Nate, Sabrina, Andrew, and Levi.

      Being a hard worker who praised efficiency, Richard was always striving to make improvements where they were necessary. He was able to analyze situations and problems, keeping everything and everyone on track. An excellent project supervisor, Richard was a person who could quickly make decisions based on the information available. He worked cooperatively and expected the same from his colleagues. In both his personal and professional environments, Richard upheld his standards. His primary occupation was in maintenance. He was employed for 32 years at Enka/BASF. Richard was a team player who certainly lived out the motto of “give me a job, and I will get it done.”

      Richard was in the National Guard. His sense of duty helped lead him into the military where his understanding of rank, his willingness to abide by rules and regulations and his desire to follow orders was admired by his fellow service men and women. He trained in Morristown, Tennessee. Through his hard work and dedication, he achieved the rank of Sergeant.

      Richard approached his leisure time in the same manner that he approached his life. A person who enjoyed being neat and orderly and one who understood the nature of things, he appreciated the hours he was able to devote to his various hobbies. His favorite pursuits were motorcycling and camping. Richard was content to enjoy his favorite pastimes alone but was also willing to share his interests with others.

      Playing by the rules was a natural thing for Richard to do in life and that carried over to his enjoyment of sports. In high school, Richard played basketball. He also was something of a sports fan and enjoyed watching his favorite events whenever he got the opportunity. Tops on his list were college basketball and football.

      Faith was important to Richard. He held high moral standards and was worried about the moral decay he saw around him. For that reason he held deep spiritual beliefs that he was willing to share. He was a member of Highland Baptist Church for 20 years.

      As someone who placed a high value on showing gratitude, Richard could graciously accept a “thank you” extended to him by those he helped. However, individual recognition wasn’t a motivating force for Richard; rather, when he saw that there was a need to get something done, he was more than willing to give his time and energy in order to see it accomplished. Some of his most prestigious awards included 30+ year service awards.

      When it came time to travel or take a vacation, Richard used his scheduling expertise to make sure everyone and everything was ready to go. That also meant that he made certain no single person was overworked in putting the trip together. Richard had a knack for making sure that everyone who was involved had their specific tasks and that those tasks were completed. Favorite vacations included Bandy Creek - Oneida, Tennessee, Badlands, and Yellowstone.

      Richard was a lover of animals and cherished his pets. One of Richard’s favorites was Crissy, a mixed terrier/poodle. They were best friends for 12 years. His family was rounded out by his cat, a great tom.

      When Richard’s retirement finally arrived in 1998, he was well prepared. He used his critical evaluation skills to make sure that every detail had been preplanned and attended to. In retirement, he found new pleasure in staying active in church and camping. In many ways, Richard loved retirement. It provided him with the opportunity to catch up with his friends, attend functions and group outings, and tackle new interesting activities.

      Richard passed away on June 23, 2020 at UT Medical Center in Knoxville, Tennessee. His cause of death is still undetermined (diaphragm decline). He is survived by his children, wife, and sisters. Services were held at Kiser-Rose Hill Funeral Home. Richard was laid to rest in GreeneLawn Memory Gardens in Greeneville, Tennessee.

      All who knew him would agree that Richard was a pillar of the community. He lived his life with his feet firmly on the ground. He had a strong work ethic, was pragmatic in his thoughts and acts, and constantly sought the means for self-improvement. He was willing to share his ideas and knowledge for the benefit of others, so that they could accomplish more in their lives. Richard M. Cox did his best to ensure that his family, friends, loved ones, co-workers, and everyone whose life he touched was given the chance to become a better person.