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Ralph William “Pete” Wooten

Ralph William Wooten, known as “Pete” to family and friends, died April 26, 2017, two days after his 94th birthday.

He was born in Chattanooga on April 24, 1923, and served in the U.S. Navy during World War II.

Pete was a strong, independent man of many talents. He retired as an aeronautics engineer from General Dynamics in Fort Worth, Texas, having worked on secret government projects and having traveled the world. For his final career, Pete became a farmer in Pikeville. He was a master craftsman, working with wood to create beautiful pieces of art and chipping flint with an antler to create authentic Indian points that could fool archaeological experts. He spent many of his last years doing what he called his homework, copying the Bible, book by book. He knew the Lord and now sees him face to face.

He was a member of First Baptist Church of Pikeville.

Pete was preceded in death by his wife, Janell Wooten of Pikeville; and two sisters, Juanita Oxford and June Miller, both of Chattanooga.

He is survived by his daughter, Janelle Wooten Phipps; son-in-law, Stan Phipps; granddaughters, Sarah and Abby Phipps, all of Memphis; one grandson, Daniel Phipps of Nashville. He also leaves behind numerous friends whom he considered family.

A graveside service was held April 27 at Worthington Cemetery with Stan Phipps officiating.

Online condolences can be made at

The arrangements are by Putnam-Reed Funeral Home in Pikeville.

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