Nancy Esther Reed
April 8, 1933 – April 1, 2018
Nancy Esther Reed of Nashville, Tennessee passed away on April 1, 2018. She was born April 8, 1933 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. She graduated from West High School, attended Ward-Belmont, and graduated from Peabody College. She was the daughter of Ralph S. Reed and Gertrude D. Reed (both deceased). She is survived by her brother Donald R. Reed, her nephew Steven H. Reed, niece Diana M. McCabe, and their families, all from Nashville.
She was an honorary member of Richland Country Club for 33 years. She was an avid golfer through the majority of her life and was a great friend to all. Known to friends as "Nan," Reed grew up within walking distance from the old Richland Country Club location. She started the game of golf at the age of 12 under Charlie Banner, Richland's Golf Pro. She was active in the Richland Ladies' Golf Association program at Richland. She was always grateful for her extended Richland family. Every year, Richland hosts the "Nan Scram," an 18-hole scramble tournament in her honor, as well as the Reed Cup, a season-long two person team match play open to members of the RLGA. Winners of the competition have their names added to the trophy which is kept on display at Richland Country Club.
At age 15, she won the first of her six Nashville women's golf titles. A year later, after a runner-up finish in the Tennessee Championship, Reed entered a prestigious LPGA event at the time, the Women's Western Open in Oklahoma City. In 1954, Reed won the National Women's Intercollegiate Golf Championship as a rising senior at Peabody College. Reed became Nashville's first National Golf Champion. In addition to winning the National Women's Intercollegiate Golf Champion, Reed also won the Tennessee Women's Golf Champion in 1950 and was runner up in 1949, 1952, 1954, and 1959. She also was the Nashville Women's Golf Champion in 1948, 1950, 1951, 1952, 1957, and 1958.
After college, she turned pro for a short time so she could teach lessons, charging about $1.50 for 30-minute lessons. Included in her long list of golfing pupils was Tennessee Ernie Ford and Minnie Pearl.
She then took a secretarial position at Harpeth Hall. She worked there for 31 years, also coaching middle school tennis and high school golf, leading both the tennis and golf teams to multiple championships. Nan was especially proud of the students' words in a dedication to her in 1995 that read in part: "Her unflagging enthusiasm and a genuine warmth that brightens each student's day makes her the first person we will want to visit when we come back to Harpeth Hall."
Funeral Arrangements are with Woodlawn-Roesch-Patton Funeral Home. Visitation with the family will be Sunday, April 15th from 1pm – 3pm. Following the visitation, there will be a private graveside service with family and close friends, with internment at the Woodlawn Memorial Park.
In lieu of flowers, please consider donations to organizations close to Nan's heart: The Assistance League of Nashville or Harpeth Hall School.
The Assistance League of Nashville is an all-volunteer organization providing Metro Nashville Public School children in need with new school clothing and other necessities to enhance self-esteem and academic success. Nan was an active member of the Assistance League of Nashville for 12 years. Nan diligently devoted time to preparing the clothing for distribution, encouraging new members, and organizing the volunteers for the organization’s annual golf tournament.
- Ralph S. and Gertrude D. Reed, Parents
- Donald R. Reed, Brother
- Steven H. Reed, Nephew
- Diana M. McCabe, Niece
- Memorial Visitation Sunday, April 15, 2018
- Committal Service Sunday, April 15, 2018
Nancy Esther Reed
April 11, 2018
I first met Nan when she, my brother, and I were all youngsters learning to play golf. I learned at an early age there was no stigma to getting "beat by a girl." Because there were no outlets for a teenage girl to play competitively against kids her age, Nan simply elevated her game to where she could dominate women's golf in Nashville and Tennessee as a teenager. In college she took it a step further by winning the NCAA women's golf championship as a student at Peabody. She was more than an athlete and excelled as a student, but more importantly, she was a warm caring person all her life. I am happy to have known her, although we did not have any contact since high school. The West End High School Alumni Association recently honored her as a member of the school's Athletic Hall of Fame. Even though girl's golf was not a recognized sport at that time in Nashville high schools, her individual accomplishments winning city and state championships must be recognized and acknowledged.