Varnell Vineyard Wolfenbarger passed away August 28, 2022, at the age of 95 after a short illness. He was preceded in death by his wife of 67 years Eileen Wolfenbarger, father Horace Vineyard Wolfenbarger, mother Eliza Hopson Wolfenbarger, sisters Mary Skeen and Virginia Campbell, and grandson Mark Wolfenbarger. He is survived by his son, Marvin Wolfenbarger (Janie), daughter, Karen Yearwood (Daryl), grandchildren Aaron Wolfenbarger, Nathan Wolfenbarger (Kristen), Keegan Yearwood, and Fiona Yearwood, great grandchildren Jackson, Eve, Paul, and Asher and many nieces and nephews.
Daddy was born on a bitterly cold January morning in a dirt floor cabin on a farm in Luttrell, Tennessee. His childhood was spent on that farm. The Luttrell farm was certified by the State of Tennessee as a Century Farm in September 2005 after submitting documents and photos demonstrating more than a century of continuous ownership and operation as a family agricultural enterprise.
Even at a young age, Daddy loved tinkering with mechanical things. In his teenage years, he permanently borrowed a book from the library about radios. He successfully built a radio using a coal cinder for the crystal and could dial in different radio stations. He struggled with his health as a small child and never learned to read well and hence never graduated from high school. After his time in the military during the Korean war, he came back and took advantage of the GI Bill attending technical school at Fulton High School in Knoxville. Upon graduation, he took a job with WBIR in 1956 and worked there for 35 years as an engineer for both the radio and television stations. While working at WBIR, he achieved his First-Class FCC license studying for his test by having Eileen read him the study books. In addition to his electronics talent, he could also lay plumbing lines, pull electrical wiring, and build whatever structure he wanted. He built mama a house by hand in the 1970’s beginning with timbering the trees and finishing with river rock we retrieved from a creek near Tater Valley. Over the years, he developed a talent for being able to listen to a vehicle engine and not only could tell you what was wrong with it, but also fix it himself. Needless to say, our daddy lived a remarkable life.
A graveside services will be held at Norris Memorial Gardens in Anderson County on Wednesday, August 31, 2022 at 3:00 pm with Rev. Tim Inklebarger officiating. Condolences for the family may be shared at www.mynattfh.com.