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Ethan Allen’s Wilde remembered

An East Tennessee business icon passed away Tuesday, July 20.

Patricia Anne “Patti” Wilde, owner of Ethan Allen Furniture stores in Chattanooga and Knoxville, was remembered in a celebration of life ceremony Saturday, July 24, at Tellico Village Community Church.

“I am deeply sorry that she passed,” said Bettye Sisco, president and CEO of Farragut West Knox Chamber of Commerce.

“I remember her well when she opened her store and how excited she was to be in Knoxville,” she added.

Patti and her husband, Gary, were active owners of the two Ethan Allen locations for more than 30 years.

Turkey Creek Ethan Allen manager Becky Betsill said, “She was about the best boss you could have; truly, she was.”

“Her staff at Ethan Allen always enjoyed her lively personality and her care for each and every person she met,” Betsill added.

Sisco said Patti surprised her with how she opened her store.

“Her grand opening and ribbon-cutting was very special because she had a blessing from her priest to bless her business and the people that worked there.

“I thought that was very, very special,” Sisco said.

Wilde began her career with Ethan Allen in 1962, when she began work as an interior designer at Shipley’s Ethan Allen in Asheville, N.C. She moved to the Ethan Allen in Atlanta, Ga., in the 1970s.

She received her interior design degree from Chicago School of Interior Design.

“I especially liked her because she took her dog to work,” Sisco, who takes her own dog, Miss Dixie, to work, said.

“She loved her dog like it ought to be loved,” she added.

Patti was a long-time member of Tellico Village Community Church, donating a van and church bells to the congregation.


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