Today's Featured Biography
After THS, I went to North Georgia Vo-Tech in Clarksville. As my Graduation approached, my brother (then at North GA College in Dahlonega) received his draft notice to report, and I knew I would be next. He joined the Air Force the next day after receiving his notice, and I joined the Marine Corps a few days later (1966). After Parris Island, Camp Lejuene, and Electronics school in San Diego, I served in the Air Wing as a Trainer in the Tactical Air Control Center in Cherry Pointe, NC. After an Honorable Discharge from USMC, I went to work at Coats & Clark as an Electrician.
In 1969, I married Vel (Velma) Smith from Crossville, Tennessee. Soon after we married, I went to work with Met Life Insurance. When I ran out of friends & family to peddle insurance to, I went to work with Sheraton/Davis Brother's Cafeterias, where I received training as a Line Chef and in hotel/motel management. I soon transferred to Dalton, GA to manage their Dalton I-75 store. Although my store did very well, the company overall failed to thrive (too many race horses owned by the heirs) and when an opportunity presented itself to partner in a popular sporting goods store in Crossville, TN, (my wife's home town) I jumped ship and moved the wife & I to the Cumberland mountains of Tennessee (09/1971)!
I later purchased the company from the partners, and Vel gave birth to our first daughter, Valerie, in ‘75, our second daughter Olana Jo, in ‘76, & our son Thomas David II, in ‘78.
I sold that entity (Outdoor World, Inc.) in the early '80's and have since built a few others. Some I've sold & some I didn't. In 1993, Vel & I started a property management company (Universal Services Corporation)and a Real Estate company Pointe Realty Co.), through which we manage resort properties, Home Owner's Associations in both Tennessee & Ohio, and general real estate rental management for 30 or so clients. We have also consulted for many properties from WI, to FL, to ME, and states in between.
Now married 46 years, Vel & I have been truly blessed over the years, as we've been able to work together doing what we really enjoy for most of our lives. Each of our kids have grown up with a tremendous work ethic and a drive to succeed in life first, career second. Our oldest daughter works for us as an accountant, with degrees in Management & Accounting. Our second daughter is an attorney with multi-specialties, licensed in Florida, Georgia, Tennessee, & Kentucky. Our youngest & only son received his Masters in Construction Management & is Project Manager with a construction firm in Atlanta, but travels from his mountain home near us in Tennessee. If my Karma is right, hopefully he will assume the reins of USC and its subsidiaries before the end of 2015, and Vel & I can pick up where we left off BC before kids, but with our grand kids, of course.
I received my degree over a period of years, as I had the time, between 1979-2005! I eventually graduated from Tusculum College in Greeneville, TN with a degree in Management in 2003, and with an abundance of credits in several other disciplines. My objective was never the completion & graduation, but the journey,... & I thoroughly enjoyed it!
Concurrent with the above, I tried to be active in my community as much as possible, and served in some public capacity continuously since 1971. With about thirty years of law enforcement and judicial related positions (24 years as our county's Coroner/Medicolegal Death Investigator, and also a certified Polygraph Examiner), my experiences have made for many tales, some taller than others. I have also served as Chairman of our local Regional Planning Commission since sometime in the early 1980's (don't remember for sure).
We have ELEVEN beautiful & thrilling grand children who think 'Grand' & 'Pa' can really do magic (There's even a T. David Burgess III in the bunch.) Vel tries to work full time at the office, when we're not travelling. I'm allowed to keep an office there, and I go in for awhile most days, cause it's hard to let go, I guess. So, we work some, play some, travel some, and generally stay active and happy! I know this is too long for a Bio, but we've been so-o-o-o blessed with such an interesting and rewarding life, it's hard to decide what to leave out!!! With a little luck in the health department, hopefully we can make the 50th reunion. It would be great to see you all again.
Regards, to All!
VIEW ALL BIOGRAPHIES