Wagner, Joseph Church

Served As Signal Mountain Town Attorney For Over Half A Century

Sunday, July 22, 2012
Joseph Wagner
Joseph Wagner

Joseph Church Wagner, 97, a lifelong resident of Signal Mountain, Tennessee, passed away on Thursday July 19, 2012. He was the son of the late Joseph White and Winfrie Church Wagner of Signal Mountain.

Mr. Wagner was born in East Lake area of Chattanooga and moved to Signal Mountain at the age of two, graduated from Signal Mountain Grammar School, Dickerson Junior High and Chattanooga High School (class of l933.)  He earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science for the University of Chattanooga (class of 1937), and Doctor Jurisprudence on scholarship from the University of Tennessee Law School, Knoxville (class of 1940.)

Mr. Wagner was an avid hunter and fisherman. He had the distinction of being the oldest Eagle Scout of Troop 60, attending the first National Scout Jamboree in Washington, DC as a Leader, and as serving as Scoutmaster of Troop 60.

After joining his father to form the law firm of Wagner & Wagner and practicing law for a brief time, Joe accepted a position with the FBI as a Special Agent, serving during World War II in California, Montana and Idaho. He married his college sweetheart, Grey Littleton of Chattanooga, on July 1, 1945 in Idaho Falls, Idaho.

Mr. Wagner resigned form the FBI in 1946 and returned to Signal Mountain to rejoin his father to the law practice, becoming the senior partner of Wagner, Nelson and Weeks and practicing with sons Richard and Michael until the day of his death. He was proud of having the privilege of making motions before the Tennessee Supreme Court to accept his two sons and one granddaughter to the Practice of Law in Tennessee.  He served as the Town Attorney for the Town of Signal Mountain retiring after 50 years and continued to serve as Back Tax Attorney until his death. He was a Charter member of the Signal Mountain Lions Club and Past Chairman of the Chattanooga Chapter of the Society of Former Agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

"Papa Joe" is survived by his wife of 66 years, Grey Littleton Wagner; children: Bob Wagner, Alice (Sib) Evans, Richard (Sunny) Wagner, Jonathan Wagner, Mary Jo (Rob) Richie, Kathleen (Fred) Robinson, Michael (Joan) Wagner, Patricia (Wayne) Stewart, all of Chattanooga and Cissy (Bob) Coleman of Vicksburg, Mississippi; 16 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.

Visitation will be on Sunday, July 22, from 4-6 p.m. at Chattanooga Funeral Home East Chapel on South Moore Road. 

Funeral services will be on Monday, July 23, at 2 p.m. at St. Augustine Catholic Church, Signal Mountain with Rev Mike Nolan officiating. Burial will follow at Mount Olivet Cemetery, East Ridge.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Walden's Ridge Emergency Service, P.O. Box 215, Signal Mountain, TN 37377, or your favorite charity.



Laney, Homer "Erby"

Homer "Erby" Laney, 74, of Fort Oglethorpe, died on Tuesday, September 30, 2014. He was born in Jackson County, Al., to the late Homer Garrison and Melvie Jones Laney, but had lived in the North Georgia area for the last 43 years. He was a member of the Fort Oglethorpe Church of Christ and was the owner and operator of Tri County Roofing for more than 40 years. He enjoyed fishing ... (click for more)

Bugg, Bettye Jean Bonds Bugg

Bettye Jene Bonds Bugg, 76, died on September 24, 2014 at a local hospital. She was a member of Union Grove Baptist Church. She was employed at Erlanger Hospital and Kelly Services. She was preceded in death by her husband, Lonnie E. Bugg; son, Michael A. Bonds; parents, James and Bessie Bonds, Sr.; brother, James W. Bond, Jr. and other relatives. Survivors include her ... (click for more)

Turner, Elizabeth Flora (Cleveland)

Elizabeth Flora Turner, 87, of Cleveland, TN, passed away Sunday, September 28, 2014 in a local health care facility. She was a life-long resident of Bradley County and attended Parkway Baptist Church in Cleveland.   She was the daughter of the late Vada Taylor Tanksley and Abe Tanksley; and was also preceded in death by her sisters, Emma Lee Guffey, Elaine Teats ... (click for more)

Soi, Neppie Ruth (Tunnel Hill)

Neppie Ruth Soi, 86, of Tunnel Hill, GA, Sunday morning, September 28, 2014 at the local hospital.  Neppie Ruth was born June 24, 1928 in Fannie County, GA to the late Jess and Hester Elizabeth Phillips Payne; and was also preceded in death by her husband, Arthur Eugene Soi; a son, James Soi; daughters and son-in-law, Barbara and John Brogdon, Connie Burnecke and Martha ... (click for more)

Linear Park Planned As Extension Of Walnut Street Bridge In Front Of Planned Boutique Hotel

A linear park that will be an extension of the Walnut Street Bridge public space is planned in front of a new boutique hotel at Walnut Street and Aquarium Way (Second Street). Mitch Patel of Vision Hospitality on Tuesday night told nearby residents that "the city pushed this idea of a linear park, and we agree that it is a great idea." He said the current situation in which ... (click for more)

Sharply-Divided City Council Approves Office Reorganization; Councilman Freeman Calls Move "Evil, Hellish"

A sharply-divided City Council on Tuesday voted 5-4 to completely reorganize the council office, leaving current staffers without a job down the road but with the option to reapply. Councilman Moses Freeman called the move "evil" and "hellish." He said, "We are punishing somebody on a personal level," though he said the office has been running smoothly. Saying the majority ... (click for more)