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Memories & Candles

“Betsy, I am so sorry for your loss. Know that my thoughts are prayers are with you. Love and miss you terribly. ”
1 of 14 | Posted by: Michel Morrow - Gallatin, TN

“Dear Betsy,I am so sorry for your loss. I had the pleasure of working with David for several years when it was TTC Knoxville. My thoughts and prayers...Read More »
2 of 14 | Posted by: A friend

“Betsy, I worked with David for many years on in-service planning and other projects when he was at TBR and continued to stay in contact with him...Read More »
3 of 14 | Posted by: A friend

“Betsy,I am so sorry to hear of David's death. Tom and he used to get into so much mischief together when they were kids! They really loved each...Read More »
4 of 14 | Posted by: Cheryl Williford Kahn - Friend

“I am so sorry for your and our loss, Betsy. Diamond Dave was a good friend to me and I enjoyed many good times with him at the ball games and...Read More »
5 of 14 | Posted by: Cal Peters - Knoxville, TN

“Dear Betsy, I am so sorry to hear of David's passing. I have fond memories of David and his fun loving character. David always had something to share...Read More »
6 of 14 | Posted by: Elizabeth Pierce Oswalt - Athens, TN

“Betsy,I worked for David at TTC- Knoxville, I am so sorry to hear about his passing. My thoughts and prayers are with you and the family during this...Read More »
7 of 14 | Posted by: Susan Reece - Coworker

“My deepest sympathy and love to all the family! ”
8 of 14 | Posted by: Bob Sweeney - Columbia, TN

“Sending my condolences from Chile ”
9 of 14 | Posted by: Carmen Lopez - Santiago - Friend

“BetsySo sorry for your loss . You are in my thoughts and prayers . Love you Lori Rogers ”
10 of 14 | Posted by: A friend

“I am so sorry and hope you are okay. Mama had heart surgery and she is still at Vanderbilt Hospital, so we can't be with you Wednesday. We will be...Read More »
11 of 14 | Posted by: Cathy Thomas - Nashville, TN

“Betsy, sorry to hear about David. Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time. Gay and Tommy Dement ”
12 of 14 | Posted by: Tommy and Gay Dement - Ruskin, FL

“Dear Betsy, we are so sad to hear this news and sending our deepest sympathy. See you soon. Love and hugs, Cissy & David ”
13 of 14 | Posted by: David and Cissy Delbridge - TN

“Betsy, so sorry for your loss. Know that you are in my thoughts and prayers. Dan ”
14 of 14 | Posted by: Dan Cowden - Knoxville, TN


David Joe Esa, age 67, died on June 17, 2017, at the University of Tennessee Medical Center in Knoxville, Tennessee, after a brief illness.

A native of Columbia, Tennessee, he graduated from Central High School in Columbia, Tennessee, and from Middle Tennessee State University with a bachelor's degree and a master's degree. In 1976, he married his high school sweetheart, Nancy Elizabeth (Betsy) Cox.

David's passion was playing guitar and other instruments, and he played in various bands throughout his life. He was fond of sports, especially the MTSU Blue Raiders, UT Volunteers, and Tennessee Titans, and he enjoyed traveling extensively.

David's career was with the Tennessee Board of Regents. At the time of his retirement, he was Director of the Tennessee College of Applied Technology in Knoxville.

He was a member of First Farragut United Methodist Church in Farragut, Tennessee.

David is survived by his wife Betsy Esa of Knoxville, his parents Vera Jo and David Earl Esa, and sister Susan Kay Esa of Springfield, Missouri, his brothers- and sisters-in-law Suzanne and Houston Parks of Columbia and Lisa and Edward Cox of Knoxville, nephews Alexander Parks and Russell Cox of Knoxville, Tennessee, aunts and uncles Bonnie and Rex Friend of Springfield, Missouri, Marietha and Leonard Crewse of Brentwood, Tennessee, Mary Ann and Ted Baumgardner of Winter Park, Florida, and Esther and Allen Durrant of Jacksonville, Florida, and numerous cousins and friends. He was preceded in death by his grandparents Gertie and James Oris Worsham, and Tressie Mae and August Esa, of Mountain Grove, Missouri.

The family will visit with friends on Wednesday, June 21, 2017 at Oakes & Nichols Funeral Home, Columbia, Tennessee from 11 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., followed by a memorial service at the funeral home, with Eddie Watson officiating. Burial will follow in Polk Memorial Gardens.

Pallbearers will be Eddie Ragland, Tommy Williford, Steve Truelove, Randy Hales and family members.

Donations may be made to the Columbia Central High School Band, 921 Lion Parkway, Columbia, TN 38401, to The University of Tennessee Medical Center's Heart Lung Vascular Institute and mailed to The Development Office, University of Tennessee Medical Center, 2121 Medical Center Way, Suite 100, Knoxville, TN 37920, or a charity of the donor's choice. Condolences may be extended online at www.oakesandnichols.com.

Funeral Home
Oakes & Nichols Funeral Directors
320 West 7th Street Columbia, TN 38401
Tel. (931) 388-4711
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