Eugene Robert “Gene” Bratton, 83, passed away at his home on Friday, October 14. He was born May 2, 1939, at the family ranch near Ronan, Montana, to Neil A. and Helen Findley Bratton, the youngest of six children. He was a 1957 graduate of Ronan High School; 1962 graduate from Montana State College with a BS in Industrial Engineering; and a 1974 graduate from The Citadel, Charleston, SC, with an MBA. He served in the US Army as a Lt. during the Vietnam War Period, and met his wife, Jean Ellen Nearhoof, while serving at Redstone Arsenal, Huntsville, Alabama, where they were married Nov. 21, 1964. They had 3 sons and 1 daughter. Gene’s career was with General Electric with 38 years of service, mostly in Power Generation, plus another 14 years as contractor with the company after retirement. He loved building rotors in both the Charleston Steam Turbine Plant and the Greenville Gas Turbine Plant, in particular.
Gene was a family man who coached soccer for his sons, followed his daughter’s gymnastics and cheerleading, organized family and school reunions, and made time for trips and visits, including an almost yearly driving trip to his home in Montana where he visited his siblings, their children, and many friends along the way.
Camping, sightseeing, and nature excursions were at the top of his list. Anything Clemson, especially football and tailgating with friends and family, was top priority for him. As a Vet, he enjoyed participating in the American Legion Post 3. He also enjoyed his time with helping students learn business practices in Junior Achievement, building and installing ramps for the handicapped with the Elfun Society of General Electric, and participating in the free tax preparation service for the elderly through the United Way. He held many positions in his church over the years and sang in the choir. Country music was his primary go-to and filled most of the time on those long trips singing to his extensive collection of cassettes, 8-tracks and CDs, especially if yodeling was included.
He is survived by his wife of 58 years, Jean; his four children and seven grandchildren: Dale and Linda Killian Bratton and their daughter Elizabeth; Gary and Lisa McCall Bratton and their son Andrew; Keith and Leigh Turner Bratton and their children Jacob, Riley and Emma; and Christy and Hollis Jones and their sons Zander and Porter. He was predeceased by his parents and five siblings: Neil, Jr., Ed, Jane, Donald, and Phil, as well as their spouses, two nieces, and one nephew.
Gene’s family will receive friends Thursday, Oct. 20, 2022, from 5:00 p.m until 7:00 p.m. at Thomas McAfee Funeral Home, 639 N. Main Street, Greenville, SC, 29601. The memorial service will be held Saturday, Oct. 22, 2022 at 4:00 p.m. at The Lutheran Church of Our Savior, 2600 Wade Hampton Blvd., Greenville, SC, 29615. Committal prayers will follow the service in the church columbarium.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to James F. Daniel, Jr., Post 3, The American Legion, 430 N. Main St., Greenville, SC, 29601; The Lutheran Church of Our Savior, 2600 Wade Hampton Blvd., Greenville, SC, 29615; or charity of your choice.
Posted in: Thomas McAfee Funeral Home
Posted on: 2022-10-18
Link to original obituary: https://www.legacy.com/us/obituaries/name/eugene-bratton-obituary?id=36825602