Roger Lynn Hyder died peacefully Wednesday night, October 1, 2014, after a valiant struggle with ALS, (more commonly known as Lou Gehrigs disease). He now joins his dad and mom (Alva and Minnie Hyder) and brother (Ronnie Goss) in a very happy reunion. Joyfully, he can again walk, talk, breathe and enjoy a full expression of himself.
Roger was born April 6, 1948 in Pleasant Hill, Tennessee. He loved Cumberland County and spent his entire life here except for his college years at Tennessee Tech where he met the love of his life, Gail Lemmons, and brought her back to Slate Springs.
His spirit is carried on by his beautiful wife, Gail, and three daughters (Jennifer Cottam, Amber Hyder and Tiffany Phillips), his sons-in-law (Sterling Cottam and Jesse Phillips), the pride of his heart, his five grandchildren (Nathan, Caleb and Megan Phillips & Stephen and Savannah Cottam). He is also survived by his sisters (Linda Potter and Frances Threet) and his extended family of relations and friends.
As a man who always put others before himself, he was known and loved by people in many reaches of life. He was an active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints where he served for a period of time as Bishop of the local congregation. He taught school in Cumberland County for 18 years, served on the COOP board, received Outstanding Conservationist Farmer of the Year in 2010, served on the Cumberland County School Board and was a member of the Cumberland County Road Commissioners. He was an entrepreneur who started several businesses including a custom slaughter house and sawmill. He was an avid farmer and land speculator and even a published author of short stories. He worked hard at everything he did and succeeded resoundingly in so many ways.
Roger’s greatest efforts and desires were for the happiness and success, both temporally and eternally for his marriage and family.
He was a great provider. He taught his children to work hard and to do it with a smile on their faces. He would take his little crew out to help cut wood for the day. He was in his element in the woods; with a twinkle in his eyes, he taught everyone how to get out of the way of a falling tree. The great lessons of life were simply taught – just step out of the way when everything comes crashing down around you.
His love for his wife was beautiful. He loved her deeply and showed it in practical ways. When he was in the “doghouse”, he once bought her a chair with flowered upholstery. He thought her most beautiful in her work clothes and her hair au naturale. His idea of a romantic get-away was a walk or ride to the Obed river with a little picnic.
He taught us all so much with his simple but deep perspective on life. He knew what was important and did not let the other things bother him. We will greatly miss his calm, steady influence. We will miss his corny jokes. We will miss his love and leadership. We will miss him.
Roger was buried Saturday, October 4, in the Slate Springs cemetery. In lieu of flowers, consider making a donation in his memory to Hospice of Cumberland County, ALS Association (alsa.org) to help eradicate this terrible disease or to the humanitarian fund through The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints.