Cover photo for Verna Lee Myers's Obituary
Verna Lee Myers Profile Photo
1932 Verna 2022

Verna Lee Myers

October 5, 1932 — November 15, 2022

Walland

Verna Lee Burchfield Myers October 5 1932 – November 15, 2022: Verna passed away peacefully on November 15 surrounded by family and friends at home. She recently celebrated her 90th birthday where she swapped Cades Cove stories with family, friends and especially Max Hodge.

Verna was born on Mill Creek in Cades Cove to Vernie and Nora Burchfield and was the second of three children. Nora was attended at home in the birth of Verna by Bessie Myers and Martha Lequire Myers Burchfield (Verna’s grandmother).

While born in Cades Cove, at an early age she moved with the family to Townsend and then Maryville to the Davis Farm where her father worked in the diaries. When her father was hired by ALCOA they moved to a small farm on Wildwood Road in Maryville. In 1949 she married Hugh Myers and moved back to Cades Cove where she lived or worked for 70 years. She and Hugh had four children Rick, Judy, Bonnie, and David who worked alongside their parents.

Hugh and his father Charlie Myers worked a government lease in the Cove for many years. Later Hugh bought out his father and he and Verna farmed the lease when row crops (soy beans) were still allowed, raised cattle, and baled hay for endless hours. Verna told of plowing the Hyatt Hill and seeing arrowheads as she drove the tractor and seeing the dark spots from Native Americans (Cherokee) campfires down near the Blue Springs. Later she and Hugh bought Cades Cove Riding Stables and they and their children worked 7 days a week for 42 plus years. For many of these years they managed the lease and the stables along with the children concurrently. As the years went by eventually Rick and Hugh joined in a partnership working the lease until 2010.

Verna ran the stables as well as participated as a horseback guide on a daily basis to include taking guests to Gregory Bald, Spence Field, and Russel field. Later she drove the carriage and shared stories with the visitors. Hugh, Verna, and David were depicted (along with other Cades Cove residents) in the July 1962 National Geographic article authored by Supreme Court Justice William O Douglas. Much of the land that was leased was some part of the original Myers and Burchfield family farms in Cades Cove. Hugh, Verna, and the family lived in three houses in Cades Cove without electricity: “Foot of the Mountain” across from the Missionary Baptist Church, the “Noah Burchfield House” near the lower end if the Cove, and the “Gregory house” along Tater Branch. Later moving the family near the Cades Cove Campground in order to have electricity. Verna was the 6th generation from Russell Gregory (Gregory Bald), 6th from Robert Burchfield, and 5th generation from John P Cable (Cable Mill). Cades Cove had special memories for her that she joyfully shared with Kate Marshall in “Voices of Cades Cove.”

Verna was preceded in death by parents Vernie and Nora Burchfield, her brothers Harley and Dallas Burchfield, her beloved husband Hugh, Grandson Shawn Myers and son-in-law John Johns. She is survived by her son Rick and his wife Sherry Myers, daughter Judy Johns, daughter Bonnie McCampbell and husband Ray, and son David and wife Terri Myers. Grand Children Regina Warnell, Jennifer Myers Wyatt, Will McCampbell, Lisa McCampbell Shelton, and Michelle Myers Massengale. Great Grandchildren, Madeline, Cole and Catelyn McCampbell, Brice and Braxton Shelton, and Savanna Warnell. She was attended by special friends Sue Simmerly, Lorene Willis, and Mary Davis to whom the family is most appreciative. 

At the age of 13 she was born again at the Mount Lebanon Baptist Church in Maryville and later was a charter member of Morning Star Baptist Church.

In lieu of flowers donations may be made to any charity of choice. She was especially fond of the Cades Cove Preservation Association located at 1004 East Lamar Alexander Parkway, Maryville, TN 37701. Family and friends may stop by the funeral home from 9:00 AM  until 2:30 PM Friday, November 18, 2022 to sign the register book and pay their respects. The Funeral Service will be held at 2:30 PM Friday, November 18 at Smith Trinity Chapel with Rev. Carol Willis officiating. The Interment will follow at Grandview Cemetery. Smith Funeral & Cremation Service, Maryville, 865-983-1000, www.SmithFuneralandCremation.com

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Verna Lee Myers, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

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Friday, November 18, 2022

9:00am - 2:30 pm (Eastern time)

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Funeral Service

Friday, November 18, 2022

2:30 - 3:00 pm (Eastern time)

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Interment

Friday, November 18, 2022

3:00 - 4:00 pm (Eastern time)

Grandview Cemetery

Walland, TN 37886

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