Rev. Wheeler Ogle Wattenbarger, 86, was born December 25,1934. He peacefully passed away at Starr Ridge Medical Center in Athens on June 20, 2021 with his daughter and son-in-law by his side. Ogle was a graduate of Niota Elementary, McMinn County High School, Tennessee Wesleyan College and received his Master of Divinity degree from Chandler School of Theology at Emory University in Atlanta. He served in the United States Army as a Chaplin’s Assistant. He married the love of his life on September 24,1961. He lovingly and faithfully served as Pastor in The United Methodist Church for 32 years serving many churches in the East Tennessee area. The final 19 years of his ministry, from June of 1981 until his retirement in July of 2000, he served Allen Memorial and Cedar Springs United Methodist Churches. He was a devoted husband, father, brother, and friend. He loved his Lord and lived his life in service to God’s people.
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He was preceded in death by his parents, Grayson and Maggie Jane Buttram Wattenbarger, his brother the Rev. Warren Wattenbarger, Warren’s wife Mildred, and brother-in-law Fred C. Hicks. Survivors include his wife of 59 years, Mary Louise McCulloch Wattenbarger of Athens; his daughter Tina Morgan and son-in-law, Paul of Riceville; his sister Hazel Hicks of Englewood; his niece Denise Roach and her husband Billy; nephew Mark Wattenbarger; great nephews Josh Roach, and Gray Wattenbarger; and great niece Leigh Hollingsworth and her husband John.
Special thanks to the staff of Life Care Center and Dominion Senior Living Center of Athens for all their care, support, and love.
The family will receive friends from 5-7pm on Wednesday, June 23, at Allen Memorial United Methodist Church. The Celebration of Life service will be at 10:30am, Thursday, June 24, at the church followed by a committal service at McMinn Memory Gardens with Ogle’s seminary and longtime friend Rev. Riley Huffstetler officiating. Pallbearers will be Jody Boggess, Bobby Farris, Wayne McCulloch, Quinn Satherlie, Tim Sharp, and Rick Skidmore. Honorary pallbearers will be ministers of all denominations
In lieu of flowers donations can be sent to Trinity United Methodist Church at, PO Box 396, Athens, TN 37371, to be used for ministries that Ogle was passionate about, please mark check, “Wattenbarger Memorial”.