Cover photo for Joe Herron Fuller's Obituary
Joe Herron Fuller Profile Photo
1930 Joe H. Fuller 2023

Joe Herron Fuller

December 25, 1930 — April 7, 2023



Joe H. Fuller – Scott County, VA

Joe Herron Fuller, 92, Nickelsville, VA, passed away Friday, April 7, 2023, at Johnson City Medical Center.

He was a beloved brother, uncle, and member of the community.

Joe was born in Scott County, VA, on December 25, 1930, to the late Edgar Rhea Fuller and Glenna (Godsey) Fuller.

He was a lifetime resident of Scott County, VA. He has been involved with the community through volunteer efforts to improve the quality of life for all who reside therein. He was a true example of service before self.

Retired from CSX Transportation January 1, 1988, Joe began his railroad career with the former Clinchfield Railroad and retired from predecessor CSX after 34 years of service. He began as an extra Agent/Operator in Johnson City with a steady climb in responsibilities over the entire railroad route. At the time of taking early retirement, he was officer in charge of all railroad operations in the Kingsport area including the railroad serving Holston Army Ammunition Plant in Kingsport.

After leaving the railroad, he was recruited by the late Peggy Turner, Executive Director of Downtown Kingsport Association, as Development Manager. He left to live part time in Jacksonville, FL to enjoy the climate and play golf with railroad buddies there.

He was asked by former Kingsport City Manager Jim Zumwalt to return and take over management of the Senior Citizens program in Kingsport for a couple of months as interim director until a permanent director could be hired. This lasted for more than six months and was a great opportunity, which led to many new friends but interfered with his newfound retirement lifestyle in Florida.

He sold his Florida property in November 2005 and returned fulltime to his residence in Scott County, VA.

Joe was active in the Kingsport, TN community for many years in the following organizations: served nine years on Board of Directors of the Greater Kingsport Area Chamber of Commerce. He was a member of the board of directors when the long running community Fun Fest event began in 1980. He then served as a board member and officer of the downtown Kingsport association. He was instrumental in founding the DKA Foundation, INC, serving as Secretary for several years. He was past president of Kingsport Optimist Club 1976-77 receiving Honor Club Optimist of the year awards for the years 1970-71,75, and 76 along with many other district awards after serving as Lt. Governor for the Tennessee District. He was also past president of the Appalachian Traffic and Transportation Club 1985. He then served on the Sullivan County, TN emergency preparedness Council representing the Railroad industry. He was then a member of the Downtown Kingsport Rotary 1983-88. He also went on to honor the Paul Harris Fellow Award by Rotary 1988. He was also a member of the Netherland Inn Exchange Place Association, Inc. After retirement, he was instrumental about establishing a Rotary Club in Scott County, VA and served as charter president. He continued to be very active in the Rotary Club and Rotary District activities. In 2004-2005 he received the Skelton Fellow Award of Rotary International District 7570. He also served as Board member of Mountain States Health Alliance serving Indian Path Medical Center, Kingsport, TN. He was then selected to receive the Tom Chase award October 24, 2011, by Mountain States Foundation in “Recognition of his integrity, informal leadership, and pursuit of going the extra mile to make a difference.” He was also recognized by state of Tennessee General Assembly proclamation 12th day of January 2012 in “Recognition of his commitment to serving the greater good and his dedication to excellence, have earned him notable honors and awards for his work.”

Joe was also past president and currently Treasurer of Chamber of Commerce of Scott County. He served on the Board of director of Scott County Economic Development Authority-two terms as chairman. He was also past chairman of Scott County Tourism Development committee. He was also the Treasurer of Daniel Boone Wilderness Trail Association. He also held a position on the Board of Directors Heart of Appalachia Tourism Authority, all while he helped develop, with 26 other tourism entities the Wilderness Road, Virginia’s Heritage Migration Route, stretching 500 miles from Winchester, Virginia to Cumberland Gap, KY. He also served two terms on Mountain Empire Community College Foundation Board representing Scott County. Joe was also part of Virginia’s 400th anniversary community celebrations commemoration of the first permanent English settlement in America at Jamestown 1607. He was also instrumental in getting Scott County designated a preserve America community. He was also partners in Fuller Bros. General Merchandise at Snowflake, VA, for 34 years. He was also awarded the Good Citizenship Medal by local chapter of the National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution. He also attended the New Bethel Baptist Church near his home in Scott County. Joe was also a graduate of Shoemaker High School, Gate City, VA, and attended Whitney School of Business, Kingsport, TN.

In addition to his parents, his brother, Charles Fuller, and great nephew, Tyler Bates preceded him in death.

Surviving is his brother, John Gladstone Fuller (Jackie), sister-in-law, Glenna Fuller, his beloved nieces and nephews, Terrie Taylor (Kayro), Carole Fuller, Caren Bates (Brian), and Chuck Fuller (Denise), and his beloved great nieces and nephews, Travis Taylor, Joshua Taylor, Drew Fuller, and Leeah Bates.

The family will receive friends from 4-7p.m., Thursday, April 13, 2023, at the Gate City Funeral Home. Services will be conducted at 7:00p.m., in the Gene Falin Memorial Chapel of the funeral home with Rev. Larry Spivey and Rev. Layton Bentley officiating. Joshua Taylor and friends will provide the music.

Graveside services will be conducted at 11:00a.m., Friday, April 14, 2023, at Holston View Cemetery, Weber City, VA. Family and friends are asked to meet at the cemetery at 10:45a.m., for the graveside service.

John Kilgore, Jr., Kyle Smith, Chuck Fuller, Dennis “Kayro” Taylor, Travis Taylor, and Drew Fuller will serve as pallbearers. Bob McConnell, Jim Addington, Cecil Curtis, Larry Crawford, Jane Crawford, and members of the Scott County Rotary Club will serve as honorary pallbearers

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that any donations be made to New Bethel Baptist Church in care of Phyllis Curtis, 1217 Big Moccasin Rd., Nickelsville, VA 24271.

An online guest register is available for the Fuller family at

Gate City Funeral Home is honored to be serving the family of Joe Herron Fuller.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Joe Herron Fuller, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Thursday, April 13, 2023

4:00 - 7:00 pm (Eastern time)

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Funeral Service

Thursday, April 13, 2023

Starts at 7:00 pm (Eastern time)

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Graveside Service

Friday, April 14, 2023

Starts at 11:00 am (Eastern time)

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