A memorial service for Mr. William Caldwell Askew, age 85, of Fayetteville, TN, will be held at 2:00 pm on Saturday, June 9, at Fayetteville First United Methodist Church with Rev. Whitney Mitchell and Rev. Tommy Ward officiating. Visitation with the family will be Saturday at 12:00 pm until the time of the service at 2:00 at the church. He died peacefully at his home surrounded by family on June 1, 2018.
Mr. Askew was born on December 23, 1932, in Fayetteville to the late Caldwell and Mildred Gotcher Askew. A 1951 graduate of Lincoln County Central High, he earned a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Vanderbilt University in 1955.
His professional career in the U.S. space program spanned five decades. He began as a co-op student for the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics in Huntsville, AL in 1954 while still a student at Vanderbilt. He entered federal service in 1955 as an engineer with the U.S. Army Ballistic Missile Agency (renamed NASA in 1960) in Huntsville, AL, and worked on the Mercury, Gemini, Apollo, Skylab, and Space Shuttle programs. While with NASA, he was awarded the NASA Exceptional Service and the Silver Snoopy Awards. Upon his retirement in 1989, he was employed by Thiokol Corporation as manager of the Huntsville Space Operations office.
Passionate about children and quality education, Mr. Askew served as a member and later as Chairman of the Fayetteville City School Board from 1969 until 1992. He was named to the “All Tennessee School Board” in 1992 and received the C. Hal Henard Distinguished Service Award that year, the highest honor given to school board members in Tennessee.
Mr. Askew was a lifelong member of the Fayetteville First United Methodist Church where he taught children, youth, and adult Sunday School classes. He was a Stephen Minister.
Mr. Askew was a farmer in Lincoln County, TN. His faith, family, friends and following his favorite sports teams brought him great joy. He was true to the schools he loved: Fayetteville City Schools, and Vanderbilt University.
He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Carolyn Askew; children, William Askew, Jr., Ann (Billy) Hatcher, Alison (John) Hoagland of Fayetteville, and Robert (Susan) Askew of Sewanee, TN; grandchildren, Alex (Holly) Hoagland of Fayetteville, Katie (Josh) Little of Bradford, TN, Ben (Kelley) Hoagland of Chattanooga, TN, Carrie (Patrick) Turner of Huntsville, AL, Bond (Natalie) Hatcher of Fayetteville, and Spears Askew of Sewanee, TN; great grandchildren Gracie Hoagland and Lily Hoagland of Fayetteville, Eli Little and Clay Little of Bradford, TN, Caroline Hoagland and Margaret Hoagland of Chattanooga, TN, Roslyn Pigg and Hazel Turner of Huntsville, AL, and a ninth great grandchild expected in November. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his brother, Joe Askew.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Fayetteville First United Methodist Church, 200 North Elk Avenue, Fayetteville, TN 37334, or to the Frank Kelso Scholarship Fund, 114 Brookmeade Circle, Fayetteville, TN 37334.
Our deepest condolences to the Askew family. Mr. Bill was a true asset to our community, as well as a man of faith and integrity, and he loved his family so much. He was so proud of each of you.
Mr. Askew was always so kind and a joy to be around. It was so obvious to others how much he loved his family and wife. He was a delight and he will be missed. Love this family so much.
Alison and family , So sorry to hear of your father’s passing . I pray for comfort and support in the days ahead .
I am so sad to
Hear of Mr Bill’s passing.Mr.Bill was one of a kind and a true and faithful Christian, who let his light shine all the time”.Mr .Bill, thank you for your great example and beautiful spirit.Prayers for comfort and peace to all the family.
Ann, Alison & family, My prayers and thoughts are with you during this sad time. May God provide comfort.
The friendship between Billy Askew and our dad, Frank Kelso, was lifelong and unbreakable. They were like brothers. What a twosome! And a foursome (Billy and Carolyn and Frank and Landess)! After our dad died, Billy was wonderful in keeping in touch with we Kelso kids by writing and checking in. He gave us that continued earthly tie to our dad and mom. What a generous heart he had. He will be missed so much by the Kelso family.
We are so sorry for your loss. I thought a lot of Mr. Bill and his family. My thoughts and prayers are with you all at this time.
Carolyn and Family you know I’m a Gotcher and I loved Billy dearly.. What wonderful Thanksgivings we ‘ve had at your home. He was such a gtacious host. Such a gentleman! I’m lucky to have kown him.
God bless you and your family. Our prayers are with you. So sorry for your loss of a great man. Love you
Mark & I both are so sad to hear of the death of Mr. Billy. He was a kind & gracious man. we will be praying for God’s peace for you & your family.
Allison, I’m so sorry to hear about the loss of your dad.
I agree with Cindy Harwell and I always enjoyed talking with Bill at church or anywhere I would run into him.
Fayetteville has lost a very fine man!
Prayers to the families. So sorry for your loss
We so loved Mr. Askew and appreciated his thoughtful wisdom. He was a true gentleman who knew the importance of family and faith and devotion to community and education. We never saw him that he didn’t have a smile on his face and a warm greeting for us. We will greatly miss his counsel, and friendship. Praying for his sweet family during this difficult time.
I am saddened for your loss. I always enjoyed our conversations when I saw Mr. Bill at the library . He always spoke so kindly of my father, Charles Sarver. I always considered Mr. Bill to be a great gentleman and a true servant to Fayetteville and Lincoln County. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.
An end of a fantastic life as the curtain draws on a marvelous legacy. Bill Askew always was kind to my sister (his daughter-in-law) and loved his grandson Spears. Additionally, he was wonderfully kind and generous to my family and me. I will miss his infectious smile and personality. I prayer for the Askew’s courage, strength and comfort during this time of bereavement.