Aaron Edward (Ed) Shields of Sevier County, Tennessee, passed away January 16, 2014. Son of Rubye and Claude Shields, he is survived by his wife, Dr. Nancy Schultz, sons Stephen Edward, Barry Levi, and Claude Darren, daughter Shelley Schultz, and grandchildren Lindsey and Jordan Shields, and Jesse Burkes. Ed is also survived by his sister, Mary Shields Holland, his brother John Charles Shields and wife Geri, nieces Shannon Holland and Tracy Shields, nephews John Holland and Joshua Shields, and great-nephew Alexander Holland.
A native Sevier Countian, Ed was a member of the Sevier County High School graduating class of 1963, and attended Hiwassee College and the University of Tennessee. He was a teacher and principal at White School and Jones Cove Elementary, a master furniture restorer, a great lover of the environment, hunter, adventurer, a fireside and outdoor chef, and a premier antiques purveyor. Intensely interested in many things, and a man of varied talents, Ed was especially drawn to antiques, and he operated Shields Merchantile and Antiques, a gathering place for friends and customers from all over the South, for many years. If it existed, he could find it, and then, refinish (and sell) it. It is no surprise that he was a lover of a good auction, with a cool hand/head for negotiating and buying.
It is natural that Ed was independent, strong, and a lover of the outdoors and the mountains, as he was descended from "the Ten Adventurous Shields Brothers", who came from Virginia and settled in Sevier County in 1784, constructed Shields Fort on Lower Middle Creek, and were the first white settlers in the vast wild country north of and including Shields Mountain. These ten brothers included John Shields, the blacksmith for the Corps of Discovery, and heralded by Lewis & Clark as the most important man on the expedition. Ed embodied this adventurous spirit with his love of the mountains, streams, respect for nature and respect for the Indians and their ways.
Ed enjoyed a wide circle of dedicated friends, whom he loved, and with whom he hunted, rode horseback, set up camp, conversed, and laughed. He was thoughtful in his opinions, was always learning, and respected others' rights to their opinions, whether he agreed with them or not. He listened, and gave good advice on business, politics, and life, but typically only when asked.
Always improving and moving forward, Ed was cool, unique, and strong, and he bids us all to "Have a nice day."
The family asks that donations be made to the historic Middle Creek United Methodist Church, c/o Tom Ricker, 439 Ledo Drive, Sevierville, TN 37862 or Friends of the Smokies, P.O. Box 1660, Kodak, TN 37764.
The family will receive friends 3-5 PM Sunday with funeral service to follow at 5 PM in the West Chapel of Atchley Funeral Home with Rev. Bob Bostick officiating. Friends will meet at 11 AM Monday in Middle Creek Cemetery for interment. Arrangements by Atchley Funeral Home, Sevierville. (www.atchleyfuneralhome.com)