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Dr. Richard Austin Hardeman M.D.

May 17, 1934 October 7, 2019
Dr. Richard Austin Hardeman M.D.
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Obituary for Dr. Richard Austin Hardeman M.D.

Dr. Richard Austin Hardeman, M.D.

Dr. Richard Austin Hardeman, 85, also known as Big Daddy, passed peacefully into the wild blue yonder in Atlanta, Georgia on October 7, 2019. He was surrounded by his loved ones. Born and raised in Coral Gables, Florida, to parents John Vines Hardeman Sr. and Gertrude Austin Hardeman, Richard was a great athlete, poet and outdoorsman. He learned to live off the land at his family’s hunting camp in the Everglades and became an expert marksman by competing in numerous skeet and trap shooting contests as a youth. He was first introduced to golf and tennis at the Riviera Country Club, where his father was a founding member. Richard became a prolific player and at one time was ranked the top high school golfer in the state of Florida. He was also the starting running back on the football team at Coral Gables High School and received his pilot’s license when he was still a student. His greatest accomplishment by far, however, was winning the hand of his bride of more than sixty years, Betty Sue. The two met while Richard was earning his M.D. from Emory University and Betty Sue was a nurse at Crawford Long. The happy couple traveled overseas together during Richard’s four years of service as a Captain in the United States Air Force, before returning to his hometown in Miami, Florida. There, they raised their two children and ran a private medical practice for twelve years. The family then moved to Shelby, North Carolina, where Richard continued another sixteen years of private practice. He spent the last thirteen years of his career as the head of The Cleveland County Public Health Department. The Hardeman’s imprinted themselves within the community as active members of the Cleveland Country Club, where Richard continued his passion for golf into his eighties. He shot his age from age 72-80. There wasn’t much he didn’t do both on land and in the water – scuba and skin diving, fishing, competing in enduro motorcycling races, and even dabbling in classic cars. The family adventures extended to many memorable vacations together, ranging from lobstering in the Florida Keys to hitting the slopes of the Colorado and North Carolina mountains. Working out and running were a daily habit of Richard’s for more than sixty years. He and three generations of his family were regular participants of The Peachtree Road Race. Richard and Betty Sue ultimately relocated to Peachtree Corners, Georgia, to be closer to their children and grandchildren. Richard was a loving husband, caring father and the best example of how to live one’s life! He made it a priority to let his extended family know daily how very proud he was of all of them. He was preceded in death by his brother John Vines Hardeman Jr.(Lisa), brother in-law Robert Albury and nephew John Vines Hardeman III and wife Gail. Richard is survived by his wife, Betty Sue, his daughter Robyn Sue Taylor(Jim Bob), his son Scott Austin Hardeman(Mysti), his four grandchildren, Cooper Taylor(Susan), Cameron Taylor, Dane Hardeman, and Sydni Hardeman, his sister Katherine Albury(Bob), his nieces Susan Plunkett(Steve), Linda Hardeman Jones,(Michael), Little Lisa, his nephews Robert Albury Jr.(Teresa), David Hardeman(Robyn), and many other amazing extended family members and friends. A small family celebration of life will be held at a later date.

The family would like to thank Agape Hospice and the Memory Care Unit at Village Park for their compassionate care and kindness. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, at

Arrangements entrusted to Crowell Brothers Funeral Homes & Crematory, 5051 Peachtree Industrial Boulevard, Peachtree Corners, GA, 30092. 770.448.5757.

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