Deanna Carolyn Weems Atkins was born Oct. 7, 1940. She was a life-long resident of Johnson City, except for a short residency in Norfolk, Virginia while her father served during World War II. She was a member of First Church of the Brethren. She was a 1958 graduate of Science Hill High School. Shortly after, she met the love of her life, John Atkins. She received her Bachelor’s of Science in Chemistry from East Tennessee State College in 1962. Her desire was to become a pharmacist and she was delighted when ETSU formed the College of Pharmacy. She and John Atkins married April 11, 1964. She went on to work on fiber product development for local industries such as Beaunit Fibers, North American Rayon, and Eastman. She retired in 1970 to be a stay at home mother to her two children, Keith and Cynthia. She became an avid genealogist tracing Weems family history as a first family in Tennessee, from North Carolina and Maryland.
She is preceded in death by her parents, Cecil and Shirley Weems, as well as her husband John Atkins. She is survived by her children, Keith (Nicole) Atkins and Cynthia (Michael) West, her brother Ward (Theresa) Weems, sister-in-law Jeanette (Walter) Brinegar, as well as several nieces and nephews.
The funeral service for Mrs. Atkins will be conducted at 1:00 P.M. Wednesday, July18, 2018 in the East Chapel of Appalachian Funeral Home with Dr. Nikki Hunt officiating. The family will receive friends Wednesday from 12:00 until 1:00 P.M. in the East Parlor of the funeral home.
The graveside service and interment will be conducted at Monte Vista Memorial Park following the funeral service. Active pallbearers will be selected from family and friends.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to First Church of the Brethren, 122 Bart Green Drive, Johnson City, TN 37615; Alzheimer’s Association of East Tennessee, 2319 Browns Mill Road, Suite D6, Johnson City, TN 37604; First Christian Church, 200 E Mountcastle Dr, Johnson City, TN 37601; or East Tennessee State University, PO Box 70721, Johnson City, TN 37614.