Jewell Emory Ledford


Jewell Emory Ledford, 86, a resident of Cleveland, passed away on Thursday, Sept. 22, 2022, at the family residence.

Jewell was born in Polk County, and he was the son of the late Thelma Fletcher Ledford and Robert "Rob" Ledford. He was also preceded in death by his sister, Betty Wilson; his brothers, Verlin, Roy, Newell and Kenneth Ledford; his stepdaughter, Sharon Johnson; and his best friend, Willard Calfee.

He was a shaving hauler for chicken houses and dairies for 30 years. He quit school at the age of 14 to take care of his family. He first worked at a lumber yard in Conasauga before he took a small truck and delivered small shavings to chicken houses and dairies. He noticed that the farmers had to manually spread the shavings after delivering them; so, he invented a mechanism that spread the shavings in the chicken houses and attached it to his truck. This eliminated the need for the farmers to spread the shavings themselves. To keep up with the demand, he grew his business to running three trucks a day.

Jewell loved to hunt; with his wife, Bonnie, they enjoyed hiking in the mountains and dancing together. She was the love of his life! He was diagnosed with dementia five years ago and it has been a long journey. Bonnie was his caregiver for years until he became bedridden. At which point, his son, Scott Ledford, his grandson, Jacob Ledford, and Julie Calderone stepped in and helped care for him. Thanks be to the Lord that his family was able to take care of him! Jewell was a very hard worker, a very giving person, and he was loved by all! He was Baptist.

Survivors include his wife of 50 years, Bonnie Ledford of Cleveland; his five children, Scott (Julie) Ledford, Kim (Cathy) Ledford, Janet (Len) Bell, Candy Hatcher and Kathy (David) Adams; grandchildren, Ashlyn Ledford, Jacob Ledford, Jacob Ledford, Kyler Moore, DJ (Michelle) Johnson, Krystal Johnson, Willie (Allison) Ledford, Thomas (Lindsey) Bell, Jason Rapier, Keri Adams and Chloe (Jeff) Hanson; great-grandchildren, Aiden and Alexia Smith, Joy, Asher, Ruthie and Clement Hanson, Jacob Bell and Ella Abdelkader; stepson, Rodney Johnson; sister, Joann; brothers, Sonny and Leonard; close friends, Randy Silvers, Jerry Byous, Gene Waldrop and AC Whaley; and several nieces and nephews.

Per his request, he will be cremated with no service, and his ashes will be kept and buried with his wife, Bonnie Ledford.

The family would like to thank Dr. Alan Chastain for taking care of Jewell for most of his life and Hospice of Chattanooga.

The Jim Rush Funeral and Cremation Services, North Ocoee Chapel, is in charge of arrangements.

You may share your condolences and your memories with the Ledford family at



Print subscribers have FREE access to by registering HERE

Non-subscribers have limited monthly access to local stories, but have options to subscribe to print, web or electronic editions by clicking HERE

We are sorry but you have reached the maximum number of free local stories for this month. If you have a website account here, please click HERE to log in for continued access.

If you are a print subscriber but do not have an account here, click HERE to create a website account to gain unlimited free access.

Non-subscribers may gain access by subscribing to any of our print or electronic subscriptions HERE