Deborah Estes Tester

February 5, 1951 ~ January 16, 2017

Born in: Johnson City, TN
Resided in: Johnson City, TN

Deborah Estes Tester, 65, of Johnson City, passed Monday, January 16, 2017 at her residence surrounded by loved ones. She was a native of Johnson City, daughter of the late Jack and Frances Beatrice Estes. She was a loving wife, mother, nonna, sister, and aunt ?mother", spiritual guide, confidant, and moral compass to many. Matriarch to an extended family. Deborah was a registered nurse, and her final spiritual calling was as parish nurse for St. Mary?s Catholic Church. She was also a life long member of St. Mary?s Catholic Church. Survivors include: her husband, Reed Tester of the home; a son and daughter-in-law, Reed ?Bodie" Tester II and Kala of Johnson City; two daughters and sons-in-law, Angela and Matt Bradford of Knoxville, Sara and Randy Hart of Johnson City; four brothers and two sisters-in-law, Tony Estes, Travis Estes, Jeff and Patty Estes all of Johnson City, George and Kathy Estes of Knoxville; two sisters and a brother-in-law, Mary ?Cookie" Saylor and Jan and Doug Tittle all of Johnson City; three grandchildren, Keller and Lily Bradford and Madelyn Hart; several nieces and nephews. The family will receive friends on Friday, January 20, 2017 at St. Mary?s Catholic Church from 2:00pm until 4:00pm. A funeral mass will follow at 4:00pm under the direction of Father Peter Iorio. Memorials may be made in the form of contributions to: St. Jude Children?s Research Center, 262 Danny Thomas Place, Memphis, TN 38105 or St. Mary?s Church Fund, 2211 East Lakeview Dr., Johnson City, TN 37601.

Memories Timeline


  1. Anonymous says:

    Debbie was an amazing woman. I loved working with her. Bless her heart. Heaven has gained another angel. My thoughts and prayers are with Reed and her family.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Heartfelt condolences to Deborah’s family. I only knew Deborah as the parish nurse. During my time as a volunteer in the church office I was amazed at the unwavering compassion shown by Deborah. As an old, old friend used to say, “Another jewel in His crown”. Patsy Donovan

  3. Anonymous says:

    It was a blessing to have met Debbie two years ago. What a wonderful woman she was.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Jeff and Patty, we were so sorry to hear about Deborah. Our thoughts are with you, Uncle John and Mary.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Praying for all of you! I know how much you love her and looked up to her. I have so many fond memories of her and your family going up together! love you all

  6. Anonymous says:

    Praying for you

  7. Anonymous says:

    So very sorry for your loss. Debbie was a wonderful soul who was loved by many. Sending the entire family love.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Such a valiant warrior who fought the good fight and was welcomed home and gained her wings to continue the journey eternally with the angels.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Travis & family – Please accept our deepest sympathies in the passing of Debbie. We will keep you all in our thoughts and prayers. We will always remember her fighting determination in battling her illness but we know she has won the victory! Again we are so sorry for your loss. Sincerely, Joe & Cheryl Nickles

  10. Anonymous says:

    Travis, Cookie and other family members: So many hearts breaking here on earth but joy and outstretched arms in heaven welcoming its newest angel. Debbie was such a beautiful person and I rarely saw her without a smile on her face and uplifting others along her path. Please accept my heartfelt sympathy and prayers in your time of sorrow.

  11. Anonymous says:

    I’m very sorry to hear of your loss. My thoughts and prayers to all of you during this time.

  12. Anonymous says:

    It’s been years since we have seen any of you guys but we love you like it was yesterday. I can’t imagine Debbie not being around. I could swear she kept the earth on it’s axis. She’s gone way too soon. George, mom and dad send their love .. they were talking about you the other day and the great days of the 70s. If Rick and me can do anything please let us know.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Over the last 2 weeks, I have been reflecting on my 39 years of friendship with Debbie. We watched our children play together and grow, we had long talks about life, we laughed a lot and sometimes we cried. She was my friend. I remember watching this family as they played volleyball each summer, I remember Christmas at Debbie’s,I remember 4th of July fireworks. She was loved by many. I will miss her. Reed, Bodie, Angie and Sara I send my deepest sympathies. Your wife and mother will never be forgotten. Tony,Travis,Jeff,George,Cookie and Jan please keep the family gatherings. Family closeness was your sisters love.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Praying for you during this difficult time.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Debbie will be missed by many. She showed love to many people. I am so sorry for your loss. I will never forget the past we shared as children.

  16. Anonymous says:

    I am so sorry for your loss and pain of this. She was so loving, giving, smart and caring!! She has left a pain in the heart of so many. God took an angel.

  17. Anonymous says:

    There are no words to express how deeply Debbie was loved and how much she will be missed. We feel so blessed to have had her in our lives and felt her love. She will forever be remembered as one of the most amazing women to ever walk this earth.

  18. Anonymous says:

    We were so sorry to hear of the loss of precious Debby to your family. She gave a valiant fight and I will always remember how strong she fought. She has been on my prayer list for quite a long time and all the family will be in our thoughts and prayers as you go through this time of loss. Love and prayers to all our old St. Mary’s friends.

  19. Anonymous says:

    Sorry for your loss. My deepest sympathies to all of the family. Prayers to everyone. Still have great memories from our childhood thru present day. Those memories will be with me forever. It was a pleasure to know her and the whole Estes family. Rest In Peace Deb.

  20. Anonymous says:

    I spend a LOT of time as a child with the Testers, Angie was my best friend when I was very little. Debbie was wonderful & will be missed!

  21. Anonymous says:

    I am so grateful to have known you and your family through your brother Tony from our St. Mary’s School days. Prayers to you and your family, old friend Ted

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