Elijah Regen Morris, age 12 of Sevierville, Tenn., the youngest son of Dan and Tishia Morris, passed away peacefully early Christmas morning, Dec. 25, 2013, in the arms of his loving mother, with his family gathered around his bed, thus ending his year-long battle with brain cancer.
Despite losing all of his physical abilities, he undoubtedly completed his life’s work by drawing untold numbers of people closer to God during his difficult journey. He will be remembered as a gentle, loving, and kind boy with a servant’s heart. He sought to first help other people, and always tried to make others happy.
As a student at Pi Beta Phi Elementary School in Gatlinburg, his interests and accomplishments were many and varied. He was an Honor Roll student and a member of the National Junior Beta Club. He was a very creative and talented artist, winning several art awards. As an athlete, he participated in tennis, soccer, baseball, and his greatest love, basketball. In his final season as a fifth grader, he was named Most Valuable Player, hitting the game winning shot to secure the county basketball championship. He also loved to snow ski, hike, and play with his brothers, cousins, and many friends. He was a member of First Baptist Church, Sevierville and participated in the youth program of First Baptist Church, Gatlinburg.
A beloved son and brother, he was preceded in death by his older brother, James Cullen Morris, and grandfather, James Steven Maples.
Survivors include parents, Dan and Tishia Maples Morris; brothers, Walker and Braeden Morris; matenal grandmother, Linda Maples; paternal grandparents, Ed and Esther Morris; aunts and uncles, Tara Maples Torrence and husband Cliff, Joy Maples, Janel Maples Buice and husband Nathan, and Whitney Maples, Gene Atchley and wife Helen, Laura Knight, Lyn Maples and wife Loretta, David Morris and wife Dana, Joy Morris Ghent and husband Shawn, Ruth Parham and husband Troy, Charles Ramirez, and Charlotte McGhee
He will additionally be sadly missed by many special cousins and extended family members.
The family wishes to express their heartfelt gratitude to all who helped make this challenging year a little easier.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial contributions be made to the family of Preston Gentry, another student at Pi Beta Phi Elementary who is battling childhood leukemia, at 737 Waterfall View Lane, Sevierville, Tenn. 37876.
The family received friends 2-5 p.m. Saturday followed by a funeral service at 6 o’clock at First Baptist Church, Sevierville with the Rev. Dan Spencer and the Rev. Bryon W. Fortner officiating. A private family burial will occur.
Arrangements by Atchley Funeral Home, Sevierville. (www.atchleyfuneralhome.com)