Dixon, Hal Bernard (Cleveland) – Chattanoogan.com
After a long life of faithful service to the Lord, to his community and to his family, Hal Bernard Dixon entered peacefully into his heavenly home on Tuesday morning, December 28, 2021 at the age of 93.
He is survived by his beloved wife of 70 years, Starr Dixon; his beloved daughters, Valerie Babb (Stan), Candace Ramsey (Chuck), Vanessa Torrence (Madison); and predeceased by his son, Hal Bernard Dixon, Jr. He also leaves in his memory 12 grandchildren, Brandon Ramsey (Bethany), Erika Henshaw (Joey), Dixon Babb, Caroline Ogle (Dylan), Hensley Babb, David Babb, Banks Ramsey, Rebecca Torrence, Stone Ramsey, Isabelle Torrence, Luke Ramsey, JP Ramsey; and two great-grandchildren, Elliana Henshaw and Ramsey Henshaw. His younger brothers, Beverly “Biggon” Dixon (Bessie), the late Henry “Bud” Dixon (Ruth), Jerry Dixon (Pat) and sister India Moody (Edward) all held a special place in his heart, with her many other family members of the Dixon and JW Stone families.
Hal was born to Dudley Burgwyn Dixon and Cynthia Lou Crowder Dixon on March 6, 1928, in Wake Forest, NC After graduating from Wake Forest High School in 1945, he served in the military as a Quartermaster Clerk and military policeman in Kobe, Japan, and later served in the Army Reserves for four years as a Staff Sergeant. Upon returning from military service, he attended Wake Forest College and received a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in 1951. He also completed graduate studies at NC State and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.
As a senior in college, Hal surrendered himself to Jesus Christ. His commitment to Christ led him to Cleveland, Tennessee, in 1955 to begin working for The Church of God Publishing House. He also became very involved with his local church, North Cleveland Church of God, where he served as Sunday School Superintendent for over 30 years, a member of the church board for several terms, and chairman of several committees, including Master Planning, Building and Historical Committees. He was also President and Director of North Cleveland Towers from 1971 to 2013.
Hal’s professional accomplishments are too numerous to list in detail. He owned shopping malls, Bojangle properties, Checkers restaurants, dry cleaning, TV stations and real estate developments. He also owned and operated 10 McDonald’s restaurants in North Carolina for 20 years. He was a founding member of First Citizens Bank of Cleveland and served on the board of directors for 34 years. The majority of his businesses have “Starr” in the name, a tribute to his wife and three daughters.
Lee University was a huge part of Hal’s life. As a 32-year member of Lee’s Board of Trustees and the Senior Emeritus Board Member, he has dedicated countless hours to the university. His greatest joy came when he chaired the Construction Oversight Committee for 27 years. His commitment to Lee combined his two great strengths: his business acumen and his Christian service.
Hal had a deep appreciation for Bradley County. He has served as chairman of the Bradley County Commission, as well as a member of the Bradley County Board of Education, the Bradley County Nursing Home Council, the Cleveland Rotary Club, the Board of Trustees of ‘Hermès and various other boards and committees.
Hal’s name rests on more than 50 plaques throughout Bradley County, an indication of his commitment and involvement in the community. Yet despite her many honors, her highest priority remained her relationship with her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and her greatest desire was to serve the Lord and attract others to know Him.
The Celebration of Life Service will be held on Saturday January 1 at 1 p.m. at the Church of God of North Cleveland, Dixon Chapel with Pastor Mark Williams, Al Taylor, Pastor Mitch Maloney, Pastor Chuck Ramsey and Dr Paul Conn officiating. The entombment will follow in Sunset Memorial Gardens with grandsons Brandon Ramsey, Dixon Babb, David Babb, Banks Ramsey, Stone Ramsey, Luke Ramsey and JP Ramsey serving as coffin bearers.
In lieu of flowers, the family is asking for donations to be made to the Hal Bernard Dixon, Jr. scholarship fund at Lee University. Checks should be made payable to Lee University with “Dixon Scholarship” in the memo line, and mailed to PO Box 3450 Cleveland, TN 37320. You can also donate online at www.leeuniversity.edu/give.
For family and friends who cannot attend the celebration service, you can watch the service live by visiting nccog.com.
Jim Rush North Ocoee Chapel Funeral and Cremation Services will make arrangements.
You can share your condolences and memories with the Dixon family by visiting www.jimrushfuneralhomes.com.