OBITUARY: Ernest ‘Ernie’ William Brothers Jr.


Ernest “Ernie” William Brothers, Jr. age 85 of Murfreesboro, TN passed away peacefully on February 2, 2023, at the Tennessee Veteran’s Home in Murfreesboro, TN.

He was born on July 19, 1937, in Christiana, TN to the late Ernest W. Brothers, Sr., and Inez Williams Brothers.

He was also preceded in death by his beloved wife of 45 years, Bonnie Powell Brothers; brother, Dalton Brothers; and great-granddaughter, Amelia Brothers.

He is survived by his son, Mark Brothers of Murfreesboro, TN, and daughter Susan (Ben) Yancey, of Bell Buckle, TN; grandchildren, Rebecca Hall (Dustin), Andrew Brothers (Miranda), Breanna Brothers, Laura Kate Yancey and Anna Grace Yancey; great-grandchildren, Paisley Hall, Kenny Hall, Aurora Brothers, and Lily Brothers.

He was a graduate of Christiana High School and Middle Tennessee State University, where he was commissioned into the U.S. Army through ROTC and was assigned, from 1960 to 1963, to Ft. Rucker, AL. There he was a flight instructor in multi-engine and a flight examiner.

Stationed in Germany from 1963-1966, he was an aircraft maintenance officer and test pilot, having the opportunity to travel in twelve European countries, with his wife, Bonnie. Capt. Brothers was a highly decorated pilot in Vietnam, from 1966-1967, where he flew both helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft. After Vietnam, he did his Master’s at the University of Tennessee, in Knoxville.

From 1968 to 1971 he taught at Sevier County High School, Sevierville, TN. Returning to Murfreesboro, in 1971, he worked full-time, as a civil service employee, for the Tennessee National Guard. First, he was chief of security, at Smyrna Airport and for over 20 years as the Aircraft Maintenance Officer and a pilot. He had the honor of flying several governors, senators, and congressmen during that time.

After retirement in 1992, he enjoyed working on the farm and drinking coffee with the guys at Hoopers Supply.

Ernie will long be remembered for his delightful sense of humor, quick wit, surprises, and willingness to help others. He was a member of First Baptist Church where he was a longtime member of the King’s Men Sunday School Class.

Funeral service will be Saturday, February 11, 2023, at 11:00 a.m. at Woodfin Memorial Chapel with Pam Pilote officiating. Burial will follow at Roselawn Memorial Gardens. Visitation will be Friday, February 10, 2023, at Woodfin Chapel, from 3:00 to 6:00 PM.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Sarah Ministry or The King’s Men Class, at First Baptist Church, 200 East Main Street, Murfreesboro, TN 37130


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