TUPELO- Ernest “Buster” Eugene Potter, age 101, died March 26, 2022, some six weeks short of his 102nd birthday. Ernest peacefully passed from this Earth after a very long, healthy, and blessed life. He was born on May 12, 1920, in Kansas City, Missouri, to the late Ernest and Mary Meharg Potter and lived most of his life in Arkansas.
He retired from the Arkansas State Highway Department in Little Rock, Arkansas, before he and his wife moved to Tupelo in 1994 to be near their dearly treasured daughters and family. He was a former member of the Kiwanis Club and American Legion of Arkansas and was a member of Post 49 American Legion in Tupelo. He also served a short time with the city of Tupelo Development of Planning and Community Development. He attended the West Main Church of Christ in Tupelo, MS, and proudly enjoyed the label of being the oldest member.
Ernest was a World War II Army Air Force Veteran with service in the European Theatre, air combat Balkans, North Apennines, Po Valley with the 86th Fighter-Interceptor Squadron of the U.S. Air Force unit, and the 79th FTR group. He served as an air operations specialist whose decorations included the Victory, American Theater, European African Middle East Campaign Ribbons, two overseas bars, 45 Caliber Revolver Expert Badge, Good Conduct Medal, and Three Bronze stars for these campaigns.
Mr. Potter was preceded in death by his wife of nearly 75 years, Mary Lynn Potter. He follows in death his veteran walking buddy, Mr. Ottis Brandon. Mr. Potter and his fellow walking veteran friends can still be seen in a photograph at Gloster Creek Village in Tupelo, where they were lovingly known as the “Honorary Security Guards” of the mall. Mr. Potter was the last surviving veteran in the picture. Mr. Potter is survived by two daughters, Alice Starling of Tupelo, MS, and Ellen Brumley (Terry) of Columbus, MS, a cousin, Bill Read (Martha) of Little Rock, AR, Pappy’s five grandchildren,Alicia Crosswhite (Robert), Amie Brust (Dr. Matthew), James T. Brumley (Angelee), Angie Crosswhite (Dr. Brad) and Mary Ellen Brumley; 10 great-grandchildren, Betsy Crosswhite, Allison Ortiz (Montana), Brantley Brumley, David Brust, Ella Brumley, Nathan Brust, Beau Brumley, Emily Crosswhite, Hunter Crosswhite and Madelyn Crosswhite; and a host of friends who loved and respected this remarkable man.
The family would like to especially thank Dr. Brad Crosswhite, Dr. Rickey Parker, and Dr. Derek Moeller for their compassion and services. Special thanks are also given to Tupelo Meals on Wheels, NMMC Home Hospice, and to Ms. Flo Coburn of Comfort Keepers.
Visitation will be on Monday, March 28, 2022, from 5:00-6:30 p.m. at the West Main Church of Christ. A private family graveside service, with military honors, will be held at the Oaklawn Cemetery in Batesville, AR, at a later time. Holland Funeral Directors is honored to be serving their friends.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made in his honor to any of the following: Pine Vale Children’s Home, 1872 County Road 700, Corinth, MS. 38834, Wyldewood Christian Camp, P. O. Box 1255, Searcy, Ar. 72145 or West Main Church of Christ, Honduras Widow’s and Benevolence Fund, 2460 West Main St., Tupelo, MS. 38801. Condolences may be e mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.