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Who Joe (LIttle Joe) Tyree; Hank Williams
What Obituary: Joseph (Little Joe) Tyree - Hearse Driver for Hank Williams from Oak Hill to Montgomery in 1953
When December 10, 2020
Where Beckley, WV

Joseph Preston "Little Joe" Tyree , 94, of Oak Hill, WV died peacefully on Thursday, December 10, 2020, at Bowers Hospice House in Beckley, WV.

Born March 07, 1926 in Cirtsville, WV he was the son of the late Augustus Jewell "Gussie" and Thelma Gertrude Blake Tyree.

Joe Tyree was the third generation owner of Tyree Funeral Home, Inc. - a business started by his grandfather, Joseph Paul Tyree, in 1915.

He attended school in the Cirtsville area before going on to be a 1944 graduate of Woodrow Wilson High School in Beckley. Joe was a 1948 graduate of the Cincinnati College of Embalming. He returned from mortuary school to begin a long career in the funeral business. The "Joe Tyree" way was to provide a professional, dignified funeral for the members of his community - a community he knew very well. A sk him about any family around and he could give you chapter and verse on all their family. His memory was amazing. He took his responsibility seriously and had strict standards for his employees who will continue to care for this community the way he taught them.

Joe was a member of the Oak Hill Baptist Church, He was also a member of the NFDA and the WVFDA.

If Joe had a claim to fame it would be that when country music legend Hank Williams was pronounced dead at Oak Hill Hospital on January 1, 1953, Joe took Hank's body into his care and a few days later drove his body to Montgomery, Al for burial. He was always gracious and eager to talk with anyone who called to ask about the event.

His wife of 62 years, Elizabeth Isabelle Sesler Tyree; two sisters, Marjorie "Margie" Gertrude Tyree and Frances Janet Tyree preceded him in death.

While not having any immediate family remaining, Joe is survived by and will be missed by all the employees and former employees of Tyree Funeral Home; his dear friend, Cora Miller; and a host community of friends.

Graveside services and committal will be on Monday, December 14, 2020 at 11:00 am at High Lawn Memorial Park in Oak Hill with Pastor David Sneed and Pastor Greg Swisher officiating. Burial will follow. Anyone wishing to attend are asked to meet at the cemetery.

Those planning to attend should use proper COVID 19 precautions by wearing masks and maintaining social distancing of 6 feet.

In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to the OHHS/CHS Alumni Association, Inc., PO Box 462, Oak Hill WV 25901 or Bowers Hospice House, 454 Cranberry Drive, Beckley WV 25801.

Online condolences may be sent at www.tyreefuneralhome.com

Arrangements by Tyree Funeral Home, Oak Hill, WV

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The Register-Herald


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