OBITUARY: Billy Joe Emberton


On December 1, 2022, Billy Joe Emberton followed the light to eternal rest and peace.

Born in Nashville, Tennessee on January 15, 1957, to Jo Ann and Stanley Emberton. Billy Joe was fourth in the line of five siblings: Tony, May Helen, Nancy and Larry, whom he cared for greatly. His wife Kathy and two daughters, Cody and Shelby carry on with his love.

Billy Joe Emberton grew up on Hopedale Drive next door to the Hudgens family, Anthony, and Doug who all became lifelong friends. He attended Antioch High School and graduated in 1975 while playing baseball throughout. Not many loved baseball like this left-handed pitcher. After receiving a scholarship for baseball, Billy Joe attended Western Kentucky University. He went on to continue that by coaching his two daughter’s softball teams.

Billy Joe Emberton was always outside any time he could be. Camping was his favorite outdoor getaway. The Great Smoky Mountains in Elkmont Campgrounds is where he would take his family and friends to camp, hike, and be one with nature. He has hiked the majority of the trails and some more than twice. Kathy, Tony, May, Laura, Cody, Shelby, Mandy and many more friends tagged along with him through these experiences. Mt. LeConte and Chimney Tops were his favorite hikes.

Billy Joe retired from his job at National Aerospace Solutions at Arnold Airforce Base in Tullahoma, Tennessee in January this year. He had celebrated his 20th year with the company and friends. He was a true craftsman who took pride in his work and was respected by all. His group called him “Big Cat” and made his long days easier. His retirement was much shorter than anyone could have hoped, but he had a great time during it.

Traveling was something he always wanted to do during retirement. So, his first trip was taking Kathy to Savannah and Charleston. Lanny and Carla Jenkins joined them on his next trip to Sedona, Arizona. Together they made many memories and shared many laughs. Lanny Jenkins was his best friend of many years who he got to see the Grand Canyon with.

They all went to the Webb Observatory and were able to look through telescopes. Space was one of his many interests. Townsend was one of the most visited places which turned into a second home. In August this year, he witnessed the largest bear he had ever seen. He took Kathy and Shelby to the Smoky Mountains with Kathy’s family: parents Johnnie and Faye Bennett, Traci and husband Sammy, and her sister Kristy. His final trip to the mountains was with Kathy, his brother Tony, and Lisa.

Billy Joe loved spending time in the mountains and with his brother, Tony, especially. He had plans to go to San Francisco so that he may see the Redwood Trees in the Redwood Forrest.

Fishing was his most recent and favorite hobby. He bought a new boat and took Kathy and Shelby fishing the first chance he got. Cody caught the only fish during their trip. He then took his friends Cam, Jeff, Anthony, Jimmy, and several others multiple times. He made any and every fishing trip a time to reflect on their past and a time to create a tighter bond.

Billy Joe had a zest for life, the biggest heart for people, and was always a defender for the underdog. People, family, and friends were his greatest joy in life.

He was always fond of politics and ask that everyone vote Democrat for the next election; also, he asked everyone to stop watching Fox News. It did not matter if you fight for or against the same cause, he was going to argue about it. He had such a passion for life and was not afraid to share the joy of it.

Billy Joe was loved dearly by his wife, Kathy, and will live on forever in her heart. Cody and Shelby will continue to cherish the love and appreciation he showed them always.

May you rest in peace.

Services were conducted by Rev. Debbie Church on Thursday, December 8, 2022, at 7:00 p.m. (visitation 3-7 p.m.) at Woodbine Funeral Home, Hickory Chapel, 5852 Nolensville Road, 615-331-1952.


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