Born Cecil Bradley DEAN on January 21, 1921 to John Wesley DEAN and Bessie BURKHALTER as the fifth child and fourth boy in a row. He would also have 4 addition brothers born in the family. He was the middle child, raised on a farm in rural south Georgia. He was taught principles of hard work and long hours, mixed with times of fun.
Officially changing his name to Brad DEAN late in life, Brad was a residential builder and commanded attention on the building site due to his size and voice.
He was born on the farm near Waycross, Georgia and went to Pearson High School in Pearson, Georgia. He did not graduate, but joined the Marines in 1937 and served the next 8 years as a Marine in WWII. He came home and married Evelyn Roberta BARKER on July 3, 1948. He worked as a salesman for a candy company and then for the American Greeting Card Company. He basically sold these items to drug stores.
One pharmacist on his “route”, Dr. Sawner, encouraged him to settle in Knox County, Tennessee around 1950 to build houses. They became partners, with Dr. Sawner providing the capital and Brad providing the work. He stayed in the profession the rest of his life, mostly building small single story 3-bedroom starter homes.
He moved to Venice, Florida around 1969. Evelyn and Brad divorced in 1973 and he soon thereafter married Hazel BARKER (actually Hazel’s first husband’s last name, not her maiden name). Brad and Hazel moved to Sarasota, Florida about 1975 and he eventually died in Sarasota Memorial Hospital November 19, 1984.