SOMERSET, Ky. — George Reese, 94, passed away peacefully at the Jean Waddle Care Center, Somerset, Kentucky, Jan. 3, 2020. He was predeceased in 2017 by his wife of 71 years, Mabel Reese.
He is survived by daughters, JoAnn (Shiva Kumar) Emerich, of Nashville, Tennessee, and Sherri (Joe LaMay) Reese of Somerset, Kentucky; grandchildren Kristin Koval, of Nashville, Tennessee; Jeremy (Joey) Koval, Menifee, California; Shawna (Josh) Bennett, Maricopa, Arizona; and Devon (Anne) Hainey, Easton, Maryland; and great-grandchildren Colin, Jacob, Ryan, Lillie, Emma, Taylor, Kash and Keen.
George was a Navy Seabee veteran of World War II, serving in France, Italy and North Africa. He was very proud of his military service and loved showing his photo albums of his adventures during that time.
He was born in Fulton, New York, where he lived until moving to Somerset in 2005. While in New York, he was a dedicated member of the Central NY Bluegrass Association and an avid musician, known for his distinctive guitar picking style, making fans wherever he went. He is remembered as an inspirational mentor to numerous young musicians who have gone on to successful music careers.
When he relocated to Somerset, he became a founding member of The Lake Cumberland Jammers.
His self-deprecating sense of humor and quick comebacks endeared him to anyone he met. In recent years he dearly missed trading insults with his friends at Kroger South, Pulaski County Public Library and L&N Federal Credit Union. More recently, he enjoyed giving the staff at the Highlands and VA Home Care team daily doses of his humor.
A memorial service will be held at Carnegie Community Arts Center, 107 N. Main St., Somerset, on March 21, 2020. Interment with Military Honor Guard will be in Mount Pleasant United Methodist Cemetery, Fulton, in the spring.
In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory may be made to Hospice of Lake Cumberland.