Earl Thomas Blankenship, 80, of Dandridge, TN, passed away on Thursday, February 13, 2020 at his sister’s residence in Bean Station, TN. He was born November 17, 1939 in Cedar, WV, a son of the late Hannibal & Texie (Justice) Blankenship. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Marilyn (Janke) Blankenship; one brother, Terry Blankenship; and one sister, Ruby Allred.
Earl was a Veteran of the United States Marine Corps. He was an over-road truck driver, having retired from Teamsters Union and Consolidated Freight. He drove trucks since he was 24 years old and was double-retired. Earl’s wife Marilyn was Polish which led him to develop a love of Polish music & dances. Earl was a history & geography buff and education was very important to him. He was a very compassionate man a true southern gentleman. He loved taking care of his parents and was always protective of his sisters. Earl was also a licensed pilot and of the Pentecostal faith.
Earl is survived by two daughters, Laura (Sam) Smedley, Jen Zak; four brothers, his twin, Clyde (Shila) Blankenship of Sauk Village, IL, Darrell Blankenship of Paintsville, KY, Billy Blankenship of Bean Station, TN, E. James Blankenship of Meador, WV; seven sisters, Glendene (Joseph) Behe of Bean Station, TN, Brooke (Robert) Allred of Bolingbrook, IL, Carol Blankenship of Stopover, KY, Amaryllis Revord of Boca Raton, FL, Linda Parton of Seymour, TN, Donna (William) Cecconi of Crete, IL, Regina (Ron) Nowosad of Ranch Cuca Monga, CA; six grandchildren; Jacob Smedley, Wyatt Smedley, Ashley Smedley, Stacy Smedley, Chad de Herrera, and Christopher Alexander de Herrera, and several great-grandchildren plus a host of family & friends.
Funeral services will be conducted at 1:00 P.M. Wednesday, February 19, 2020 at the Jones & West Funeral Home with Reverends Bernard Smith, Odis Blankenship & Benny Freeman officiating.
Burial will follow in the Wylie Justus Cemetery, Hurley, VA.
Visitation will begin at 6:00 P.M. Monday and Tuesday at the funeral home with services at 7:00 P.M.
Arrangements are under the direction of the Jones & West Funeral Home of Phelps, KY. The guestbook may be signed at www.joneswestfh.com.
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