Mrs. Margaret Richards Ballew, age 88, of Cleveland, Tennessee, passed away February 26, 2020, in the Bradley Healthcare & Rehab Center in Cleveland. She was born March 30, 1931, to the late Dallas Peter and Ora Jane Tarpley Richards in Fannin County. She mostly worked in retail sales, beginning at Williams 5 and Dime Store for a number of years and later retiring from Life Line Christian Book Store. She enjoyed the outdoors in many ways including gardening, working in the yard (often barefooted) and fishing.
Margaret spent most of her life in service of others in some way and she loved spending time with her family and grandchildren. One of her greatest accomplishments was that she was a charter member of the Fannin County Sports Hall of Fame from her days of high school basketball. Also preceding her in death is her husband, Ham Tedo Ballew; and four siblings, David Richards, Patsy Ruth Richards, Mark Richards and Janice Richards Mote.
Survivors include her children and their spouses, Danny and Jenny Ballew of Mineral Bluff, Freeda Helton of Cleveland and Wanda Kay and Gentry “Buck” Newby of McMinnville, Tennessee; sister and brother-in-law, Betty Jo and Wayne Owenby of Villa Rica, Georgia; grandchildren, Channing (Faith) Ballew, Jamison Ballew, Cindy (Jeff) Clabough, Carla (Craig) Foster, Caryn (Butch) Gibson, Holly (Kevin) Sizemore, Chad (Lindsey Cook) Newby, Scott (Doris) Graves, Tina (Aaron) Hairy, Jeremy (Melissa) Helton, Hilary Helton and Cindy (Mark) Sockwell; great-grandchildren, Angel, Victoria, Brandon, Alexandra, Hailey, Pacey Ballew, Christopher Clabough, Conner Clabough, Daulton (Aprile) Foster, Danielle Foster, Hayley (Kelsie) Gibson, Hope Gibson, Joshua Sizemore, Spoony Sizemore, Ashleigh Graves, Barron Hairy, Avery Hairy, Lawson Helton, Lake Helton, Hunter (Hannah) Sockwell and Parker Sockwell; great-great-grandchild, Lou Anna Brown; sister-in-law, Imogene Richards of Epworth; brother-in-law, Chuck Mote of Cumming, Georgia; numerous nieces, nephews and a host of other relatives and friends also survive.
Funeral services were conducted Saturday, February 29, 2020, from the Akins Funeral Home chapel with the Rev. Scott Graves officiating. A eulogy was provided by Buck Newby. Interment followed in the Crestlawn Cemetery with the following grandsons serving as pallbearers: Jamison Ballew, Chad Newby, Channing Ballew, Chris Clabough, Daulton Foster, Conner Clabough, Spoony Sizemore, Joshua Sizemore and Pacey Ballew.
Memorial contributions may be made to The Gideons International at www.gideons.org. Condolences may be sent to the family online at akinsfuneralhome.com. Akins Funeral Home of Blue Ridge was in charge of the arrangements.