Mr. Joel Vinson, age 84, of Manchester, TN, passed from this life Friday, December 8, 2023, at his residence.
Born on March 12, 1939, Vinson was a 1957 graduate at DuPont High School and a 1962 graduate of Middle Tennessee State University.
Vinson first took over the Westwood Lady Rocket basketball program in 1962, coaching until 1979 before taking a six year break. He returned to the bench in 1985 and continued coaching what was then Westwood Junior High School until permanently retiring in 2004.
Between his two stints at Westwood, Vinson amassed a 350-148 win-loss record and impacted hundreds of student athletes.
Vinson was also heavily involved in golf. Playing collegiately at Middle Tennessee State University and he continued to play up until his passing. He could still be found regularly watching Coffee Middle and Coffee County Central games on the front row of the bleachers.
Joel’s two sons currently coach basketball. David Vinson is the head coach at Coffee Middle, where the Lady Raiders are 15-0 this year. Matt Vinson has been an assistant for the Coffee County Central Lady Raiders for the past 7 years. His granddaughters are also heavily involved in basketball and golf: Bella Vinson is currently a junior starting for the Lipscomb Bison, while Olivia is a junior starter for the CHS Lady Raiders. Joel’s oldest granddaughter carried on his golf legacy, playing for Trevecca Nazarene University in college.
Retired from coaching for nearly 20 years now, Vinson’s name is still proudly displayed on the gymnasium at Westwood Middle School – The Joel Vinson Gymnasium.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by sibliings, Paul Vinson and Wanda (Vivion) Rice.
Mr. Vinson is survived by his wife of 62 years, Nancye Vinson; sons, David Vinson and Matt (Brandy) Vinson; sister-in-law, Mary Joan Vinson; grandchildren, Sophie Vinson, Bella Vinson, and Olivia Vinson; several nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be held Tuesday, December 12, 2023, from 10:00am until 1:00pm at Central Funeral Home in Manchester, TN. Graveside services will follow at 1:30pm at Rose Hill Memorial Gardens, with burial immediately following at the cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Dennis Weaver Foundation, 1030 Oakdale St., Manchester, TN 37355 or digitally by clicking here.
Central Funeral Home is honored to serve the Vinson family, 931-723-7774, centralfuneralhome.com
Obituary information obtained from thunder1320.com, Manchester, TN.