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Joseph Shelby Lay Sr., 85
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Joseph Shelby Lay Sr., 85, a McMinnville resident and Athens, TN native was born Aug. 28, 1934 and passed away Oct. 17.

He was a veteran of the U.S. Army and Marine Corps Reserves, a retired accountant with Carrier Corporation, a member of First United Methodist Church and the son of the late Paul Berry and Allie Ruth Evans Lay.

He was married Dec. 19, 1954 to Elizabeth Ann Cate Lay, who survives. In addition to his wife, he is survived by two sons and spouses, Rev. Joseph Shelby Jr. (Laura) Lay of Panama City Beach, Fla., and Mark Andrew (Jenann) Lay of Cleveland, two daughters and spouse, Robin Elizabeth Lay of Greenville, and Sara (Jeff) Lee of McMinnville, grandchildren Mary Catherine Lay of Pensacola, Fla., Elizabeth (Rob) Dunavant of Birmingham, Ala., Emily (Tim) Petcu of Nashville, Rev. Andrew Curtis Lay of Athens, David Lee of McMinnville, and Jacob Lee of McMinnville, and three great-grandchildren; sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law, Roberta and Glen Ramsey of Cleveland, Hugh E. Cate Jr. and Rickie Of Noblesville, IN, and Susan and Jim Tindal of Cleveland. Many nieces and nephews also survive.

A celebration of life will be held in the Outreach Building of First United Methodist Church on Tuesday, Oct. 22, at 4 p.m. Visitation will be from 2 p.m. until the time of service. A gathering of friends and family will be held in Cleveland, TN at First United Methodist Church on Wednesday, Oct. 23, at 1 p.m. to celebrate the life of Joseph S. Lay Sr. Memorials may be made to First United Methodist Church, 200 West Main St., McMinnville, TN 37110. Online condolences may be made at

High Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Southern Standard

(McMinnville, Tenn.) Oct. 20, 2019