Shirley Kennedy Hardy, 87, entered into the presence of her Lord, Jesus Christ, passing peacefully in her sleep January 17, 2023. She was born in Perryville, TN to John Elvin and Mabel Reynolds Kennedy. After the loss of her father when she was still very young she later moved to Red Bank with her family and new loving step-father, Captain Harris D. Underwood.
She received her education at Red Bank High School and Carson Newman College. While at Red Bank, she was a member of the National Honor Society, Service Club, Tri-Hi-Y, Girls State Representative, Senior Class Vice President, 4 year varsity cheerleader, co-captain of the varsity basketball team, and yearbook feature editor. Her senior year she was crowned Miss Red Bank.
She continued her education at Carson Newman College earning a degree in Elementary Education. She served as President of the Calliopean Literary Society, varsity head cheerleader, and member of the touring A Capella Choir. She was also listed in Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities.
While working at American Lava in Chattanooga, during summer break from Carson Newman, she caught the eye of Warren Hardy, one of their young engineers. Soon the couple became engaged with plans to marry after her graduation. She went on to teach in elementary school for a brief period before wedding the love of her life.
The couple began building their custom designed home where Warren noted Shirley was “very handy with hammer and saw”. At the same time they began building their family, welcoming two daughters, Jan and Kay. Shirley was active in many community activities, taking leadership roles in Senior Neighbors, Meals on Wheels, the Dallas Crest Garden Club, the Kosmos-Women’s Club, as well as the Chattanooga Symphony Guild. Shirley was named one of the Outstanding Young Women in America in 1966.
She earned her private pilot’s license and flew alongside her pilot husband on business trips as well as with the family for pleasure. Shirley and Warren also enjoyed extensive camping trips in their Airstream for over 40 years, traveling the Blue Ridge Parkway, New England, Canada, and many National Parks across the country.
Most of all she served the Lord, devoting herself to Church and family. She was a beautiful voice in the choir at 1st Presbyterian Church for over 40 years. She served as President of Women in the Church as well as Sunday School teacher to early elementary school age children. She was integral in forming the popular group for seniors in the church called “It’s a Wonderful Life”.
She has gone on to join the Lord and the Heavenly Choir. She leaves behind, for now, her beloved husband of 66 years, Warren Jones Hardy, daughters Jan Hardy Fanslow (Robert) and Kay Hardy Baker (David), grandchildren Caroline Baker and David Hardy Baker (fiance Ella Lansdell).
Services will be held Monday, January 23 in the chapel at 1st Presbyterian Church, Chattanooga at 12:00 PM. Visitation will be one hour before with private interment at Forest Hills Cemetery following the service.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to World Missions of 1st Presbyterian Church, Chattanooga.
Arrangements entrusted to Lane Funeral Home, 601 Ashland Terrace, Chattanooga, TN 37415 www.lanefh.com 423-877-3524.