Bernard Lee Shutes, known locally as “Vivian”, 84, of Jackson County, Florida died July 15, 2018 with his family by his side following a brief illness while in the care of Covenant Care Hospice in Panama City Florida. He was born in Kynesville on September 15,1933 to Gordon Bernard Shutes and Ollie Fennell Shutes. Paternal grandparents were Gordon Lee Shutes and Mamie Lash Shutes. Maternal grandparents were Laney Love Arnold Fennell and Amos P Fennell.
He attended Kynesville Elementary School; was a 1951 graduate of Cottondale High School; a 1953 graduate of Chipola College; and a 1962 graduate of Auburn University. He served in the U.S. Army from 1953 to 1956, with basic training in Fort Jackson, S.C., followed by serving in Okinawa, Japan.
Following graduation from Auburn University, he honed his broad knowledge of industrial construction including power plants, paper mills and automotive assembly plants around the country. Upon completing a project at Port Panama City, to afford his family the opportunity to stay in area, he opened Shutes Construction Company, specializing in custom residential and commercial. After his children were grown, he returned to large scale industrial construction and the travel it demanded.
Following his retirement he returned to his roots of Jackson County. When his health failed he moved to the Clifford Chester Sims State Veterans Nursing Home. He spent his last days in the compassionate care of Covenent Hospice.
While very intelligent, he strived to obtain broad knowledge of many subjects whether it be engineering, the arts, philosophy, legalities – or human nature. He had a very strong body that he utilized to the fullest, working from a very young age learning construction from his father and uncles. He maintained that strength through his last days. He was a giver – whether it be of his time, his labor, his knowledge of building and engineering, his material resources or his very broad shoulders upon which many would lean.
His many interests included a love of music, travel, museums and a variety of arts. He was an avid supporter of western heritage museums, the Albuquerque Balloon Festival, and The Dayton Art Institute Guild, to name a few. He was a private pilot and enjoyed the freedom afforded in traveling via his own planes for his business and pleasure. He was an advocate for the American Legion Boys State program, was bestowed the honor of a Kentucky Colonel, he served as a Gideon, was a member of Kiwanis International, and generously served on the building committees of various churches and organizations that he belonged over the years.
A natural athlete, he loved the game of basketball and played on Cottondale High School’s State Championship team his senior year. He continued to play basketball while attending Chipola and during his service in the Army.
In addition to his parents and grandparents, Vivian is predeceased by his eldest daughter Miriam Elaine Shutes, granddaughter Kathryn Michaela Crosby and sons-in-law, Michael D. Crosby and Bill D. Moreland; and a brother, J.W. Shutes.
He is survived by his sister, Muriel Shutes Baxley, Lynn Haven; daughters Jennifer Shutes Crosby Moreland, Atlanta, Georgia; Brenda Shutes Reed, Panama City; former wife and mother of his children, Fredda Williams Shutes, Panama City; former sister-in-law Aletta Shutes, Tallahassee, granddaughter, Amanda Reed Hodges (Brian), grandson, Brandon Reed, great-granddaughters Alexis Reed and Briana Hodges all of Panama City, and beloved cousins, nieces and nephews.
Arrangements are provided by Obert Funeral Home, Chipley, Florida. Visitation, services and burial will be at Bethlehem Baptist Church on Saturday, July 21st with visitation from 10:00-11:00 and services to follow from 11:00 - 12:00 with the Reverend Jim Sharkey officiating. Burial shall be in the Bethlehem Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers the family suggests memorials be made to The Cal Farley Boys Ranch, P.O. Box 1890 Amarillo, TX 79174-0001, Ph.(800)687-3722 or The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, 8382 Baymeadows Rd Ste 9, Jacksonville 32256 - Ph.(904)733-3560.