Donald E. Rice

Feb. 19, 1937-March 24, 2021


Donald E. Rice, 84, of Sparta, passed away March 24, 2021, at Saint Thomas Highlands Hospital, in Sparta. 

Mr. Rice was born Feb. 19, 1937, in Sparta, to John B. Rice Sr. and Lena Rivers Rice.

He was owner of Rice Grocery for over 40 years.  Along with his brother, he developed the River Oaks Subdivision, on the Caney Fork River, in Van Buren County.  He was also elected as commissioner of the 7th district, in 1978, and served three terms. 

Mr. Rice was preceded in death by his parents and a brother, John B. "Shorty" Rice Jr.

He is survived by his daughter, Connie Sparkman and husband, Robert, of North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina; brother, Kyle Rice, of Memphis; sister, Faye Smith, of Sparta; grandson, Trey Cantrell and wife Sarah, of Cookeville; and great-granddaughter, Reghan Cantrell.

Due to COVID-19 precautions, the family held a private service, with burial in Oak Lawn Cemetery.

Hunter Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements.


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