Richard Lee Cody
Richard Lee Cody, 85, of the Stecoah Community near Robbinsville, went home to be with the Lord early Monday, May 30, 2016 at Harris Regional Hospital in Sylva, after an extended illness.
On April 14, 1931, Richard was born in a two story log house on Cody Branch, to William Robert and Rachel Greene Cody. Coming from a large family of 17 children and being the oldest son, he learned to work hard at a young age. At the age of 5 he would stand on a scaffold to help his father use a cross-cut saw. His other chores on the family farm included gardening and plowing the fields with his steers, Berry and Charlie which he later sold in Florida to buy his first truck, a 1956 Ford Ton, raising cattle and logging. He was able to attend school just until the beginning of the 4th grade and never learned to read. When he was 16, he went to Gastonia, NC to work in the cotton mills. When he returned to Graham County, at the age of 25 he married and became a Burley Tobacco farmer for 40 years, hauling cured tobacco to Monk Owens and Dixie Big Burley markets in Asheville, and other markets in Knoxville. He hauled for himself and others. He publicly used his truck to haul wood, stone, coal or anything else he could haul. He drove the school bus for Stecoah School for 4 years. He loved the mountains, the outdoors, or anything that was made of wood; that’s why he enjoyed his work in the Older Americans Program at the US Forest Service. He was employed there from 1995 until he retired in 2014.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his brother, Claude Cody; his wife of 46 years, Wilma Carringer Cody; his sisters, Frankie Barmes, Jessie Cable, and Nola Mauney; his great grandchildren, Blake, twins Chayton and Dalton, and Haze.
Richard is survived by his two daughters, Rita Eller and husband, Joe, of Robbinsville, and Sharon Hickey and husband, Tony, of Whittier; his five grandchildren, Shelley Eller of Canton, Dustin Eller and wife, Tara, of Robbinsville, Lori Carroll and husband, Beau, of Whittier, Kelley Lee and fiancée, Dan of Columbia, SC, and Randi Locust and husband, Andrew, of Cherokee; his ten great grandchildren, Damon, Kyra, Bailee, Gavin, Terrell, Ayianna, Avery, Lakelyn, Logan, and Oakleigh; his brothers, Floyd Cody, Loyd Cody, Hardy Cody, Johnny Cody, and Jack Cody, all of Stecoah, Eddy Cody of Bryson City, Thurman Cody of Gastonia, and Herman Cody of Elizabethton, TN; his sisters, Olean Brown and Velvie Knight, both of Stecoah, Brenda Brown of Marietta, GA, and Wanda Moore of Rex, GA. He is also survived by many nieces and nephews.
Richard was a man of faith and loved the Lord greatly. His most cherished moments were spending time with his family and friends, story telling, attending family reunions and Church gatherings, helping with Fall Festivals and Relay for Life Events. His greatest passion after his retirement was in planting and watching his gardens grow. At the end of the growing season, he took pride in selling his vegetables at the local Farmers and Tailgate Markets.
Richard sewed many seeds of kindness and believed in being honest and fair to everyone. He will be remembered as a loving husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather, son, brother, uncle, brother in law, and friend to many.
Funeral services were held at 1 p.m. Friday, June 3, at the Townson-Smith Chapel. The Reverends Delmar Holder and G.D. Phillips officiated. Burial followed at the Greene Family Cemetery near his home. The family received friends from 6 until 8 p.m. Thursday at Townson-Smith Chapel.
Townson-Smith Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements. An online register is available at www.townson-smithfuneralhome.com.