Cover photo for John Marshall Gilliland's Obituary
John Marshall Gilliland Profile Photo
1932 John 2021

John Marshall Gilliland

December 14, 1932 — December 4, 2021

John Marshall Gilliland, 88, a resident of Cleveland, passed away Saturday, December 4, 2021, in a Chattanooga healthcare facility.  A lifelong resident of Cleveland, he attended the Cleveland First Baptist Church.  He was a 1951graduate of Bradley Central High School as well as a graduate University of Tennessee in 1956 with a degree in Agriculture.  He attended the Officer training school before entering the Navy in 1957 and honorably discharged in 1964.  He went on to become a member of the Tennessee Fruit and Vegetable Association for many years and was the owner of Gilliland Orchards.  He famed in LaVergne Tennessee and grew preaches from 1976-1986, selling peaches in Knoxville, Nashville, Murfreesboro, and Chattanooga since the early 1970s.  In addition,  grew peaches in Ringgold, GA from 1993-2008.  John never retired.  He actively ran Gilliland’s Orchard until his death.  He loved playing snooker, shooting pool, dancing, meals, and socializing at the Bradley-Cleveland Senior Center.

He was preceded in death by his wife of 53 years, Alma Jean Gilliland; parents, Clee R. Gilliland and Wilma Coleman Gilliland Merrill; and brother, Robert Gilliland.

He is survived by three children, LuAnn Carey (Mike) of Cleveland, Jane Flowers (Michael) of Cleveland, and Lyn Dixon (Joseph) of Dawsonville, GA; eight grandchildren, Meranda Smith of Asheville, NC, Jeremy Flowers (Cary) of Cleveland, Emily Carey of Cleveland, Elijah Carey of Cleveland, Rachel Flowers of Cleveland, Megan Dixon, Josiah Dixon, and Jaden Dixon all of Dawsonville, GA; four great grandchildren; two sisters, Jane Giles, Watkinsville, GA, and Sally Cole (Eddie) of Carrollton, GA; and several nieces and nephews also survive.

A celebration of his life will be conducted at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, December 11, 2021, in the chapel of Ralph Buckner Funeral Home with the Rev. Tom Wickes officiating.  Interment will follow in Cedar Springs Baptist Church Cemetery.  A white dove release ceremony and the playing of bagpipes will conclude the service.  The family will receive friends from 4-8 p.m. on Friday, December 10, 2021, at the funeral home and from 12:00-1:00 P.M  on Saturday, December 11, 2021 at the funeral home prior to the service.

We invite you to send a message of condolence and view the Gilliland family guestbook at


To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of John Marshall Gilliland, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

A Gathering of Friends

Friday, December 10, 2021

4:00 - 8:00 pm (Eastern time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Celebration of Life

Saturday, December 11, 2021

1:00 - 2:00 pm (Eastern time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


Photo Gallery

Visits: 66

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the
Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Service map data © OpenStreetMap contributors

Send Flowers

Send Flowers

Plant A Tree

Plant A Tree