Josh Tenpenny

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Josh Tenpenny was born in Cannon County on June 15, 1943, to Virgil and Sammye Tenpenny. He grew up as a budding entrepreneur, selling geodes he collected on the hillsides to passers-by at a roadside table. He was a loving brother to his three sisters, even as he kept them on their toes with his trademark good-natured teasing. He graduated from Central High School in Cannon County in 1961 and was voted "Neatest Boy," an appropriate award for a boy who started shining his own shoes at the age of four. He was known to keep his car so clean through continual washing that his license plate numbers would begin to fade. He worked his way through college and graduated from MTSU in 1968.

He married Barbara Jennings in June 1968 before joining the Air Force and being stationed in Massachusetts and Vietnam. When he returned to the States in 1972, he and Barbara brought their young daughter Denise to Winchester and opened Jennings Jewelers, which his father-in-law, Austin Jennings, had first started in Woodbury. Josh and Barbara soon added Marlene and Lyle to their family and settled into family life. Josh became a certified gemologist and ran Jennings Jewelers until the late 1980s, when he purchased the business and changed the name to United Diamond Brokers, which he owned until he retired in 2009. During those years, he helped hundreds of couples get engaged and married and made Christmases, anniversaries, and birthdays special with beautiful and meaningful gifts.

Josh was also an active part of the civic life of Winchester. He was a long-time member of the Rotary Club and was honored as a Paul Harris Fellow. He was a past President of the Franklin County Chamber of Commerce. He was also an active member of the Independent Jewelers Organization and served as the president of the Tennessee Jewelers Association. He served on the ERPUD Gas Board for several years during his retirement.

When he was not working, Josh loved to spend time travelling with his family. In the '80s, he and Barbara would load up the kids in an RV and travel the country for weeks at a time. In more recent days, he and Barbara travelled the world, with trips to Switzerland, France, Italy, Egypt, and numerous cruises, and loved sharing their pictures. He also enjoyed working in the yard, running, golfing, hiking, and hunting.

The bedrock of his life--other than Barbara--was the church. He and Barbara joined the Winchester Church of Christ in 1972, and he served as a deacon, song leader, and elder there for many years. He made lifelong friends, shared in the joys and sorrows of his church family, and led singers at numerous funerals.

He will be missed by his entire family: most especially his wife of 55 years Barbara; his three children: Denise and Tommy Stone, Marlene and Jason Cowan, and Lyle and Virginia Tenpenny; his 8 grandchildren: Charles, Elinor and Anabel Stone, Olivia, Alexus, and William Cowan, and Joshua Blessing and Lola Tenpenny; his three sisters: Jo Ellen and Terry Davenport, Katherine McDowell, and Maxine and Bobby Bates; and several nieces and nephews.

We would like to say a special thanks to the family at the Winchester Church of Christ, the staff at Bailey Manor, and the Gentiva Hospice Group. Memorial gifts can be made to the Winchester Christian Academy and the Lewy Body Dementia Association (

Visitation will be from 4-7pm on Saturday, March 16, 2024, at Moore-Cortner Funeral Home. Funeral Services will be held at 1:00pm on Sunday, March 17, 2024, in the Chapel of Moore-Cortner Funeral Home. Graveside Services will be held at 4:00pm at Leoni Cemetery in Woodbury.

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