BLOUNT COUNTY, Tenn. (WATE) — The Blount County community celebrated the life of Brian Tuggle in Maryville Saturday.
Tuggle was 54-years-old when he died Sunday at UT Medical Center. He was well-known in the community for his work with various non-profits, like Alzheimer’s Tennessee, The Gate, and the Boys and Girls Club of Blount County.
Edward Harper met Tuggle 20 years ago when they worked on the fundraiser “April Foolies” together, which benefitted abused children.
“I lost a friend, I lost a colleague, the community lost a leader and an advocate,” Harper said.
They went on to work together on various events and fundraisers for Alzheimer’s Tennessee.
“Being an advocate and being a leader and a fundraiser, you couldn’t really think about Alzheimer’s Tennessee in this county without knowing that Brian Tuggle was behind it,” he said.
Aside from being colleagues, Harper said Tuggle became a close friend.
“Brian Tuggle was not a predictable element. The only thing that really would be predictable was you were going to laugh when you were around him,” Harper said.
Clint Woodfin met Tuggle thirteen years ago through another organization, Leadership Blount.
“Brian Tuggle is an institution in our community. Whenever anybody needed help, he was there. Whether it was the highest corporate entity in town or the simplest non-profit, Brian was there with love and a smile to help anyway he could,” Woodfin said.
Tuggle also served as a role model for other leaders in the community. He helped former State Senator and U.S. Attorney Doug Overbey on many of his campaigns.
“Somebody you could count on to be there for you and someone whose advice I valued and that’s not just me, it’s the entire community. I don’t think there’s any non-profit organization that he did not support either with his time or talent,” Overbey said.
All of Brian’s friends agreed that there are many words to describe him, but never enough.
“Loving, dynamic, hilarious, caring, tardy but always there for everyone,” Woodfin said.
Tuggle was also known as the drummer in the local band, “Pistol Creek Catch of the Day.”