Riley Stephens, Sr.

Riley Tillman “Steve” Stephens, Sr. of Snellville, GA, formerly of Lilburn, GA passed away Wednesday, October 25. Mr. Stephens was a lifelong local resident born August 10, 1919 in Morrow, GA, the son of the late Julius Green Stephens and Beulah Lee Milam Stephens. Mr. Stephens attended Hoke Smith High School and graduated from Tech High in Atlanta. After 2 years in the Electrical Apprenticeship Training Program, he became a journeyman electrician. He was to receive a 66-year service pin from Local 613 of the IBEW in November of this year. He was an active member of Panthersville Masonic Lodge for many years. During World War II, he worked in Oak Ridge, TN and the Bell Bomber Plant in Marietta, as well as Warner Robins Air Base. He later served in the U. S. Navy. Following the war, he returned to Atlanta and worked for Eckardt-Ness Electric Company which later became Eckardt Electric Company. Mr. Stephens purchased the firm in 1971. He was an active member of the National Electrical Contractor's Association (NECA), serving as the president and governor of the Atlanta Chapter. He was selected as the Atlanta Electrical Industry “Man of the Year” in 1981, and was elected to the Academy of Electrical Contracting in 1982. He also served as one of the original members of the State of Georgia Construction Industry Licensing Board with one term as chairman. As an avid golfer, he was a member of the East Lake Golf Club, Druid Hills Golf Club and an electrical industry golfing association, BYO. He is survived by his loving wife of 67 years, Jane Ellen Jenkins Stephens, and his children: Betty Ann Summerford of Snellville and Riley and Becky Stephens, Jr. of Tucker; grandchildren: Cindy Stephens, Jeanne and Ashton Cary, Rilo and Wanda Stephens, great grandchildren: Stephen and John Cary, Patrick and Elizabeth Stephens. Tillman always felt that his proudest accomplishment was the passing of his strong Christian faith to all his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. He and his wife were founding members of Lilburn Alliance Church, which first met in their home. He remained a faithful member until his death, inspiring everyone he met with his strong faith and kind heart. His life exemplified the joy of the Lord through his humble, joyful service to others. Funeral service will be held on Sunday, October 29 at 2:30 PM at the Lilburn Alliance Church. Interment will follow at Decatur Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, Mr. Stephens had asked that memorial contributions be made to the Lilburn Alliance Church Building Fund. The family will receive visitors on Saturday, October 28 from 1 to 4 PM at A. S. Turner & Sons in Decatur.