Gordon Varnedoe passes away at 82

Gordon Varnedoe passes away at 82

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Gordon Varnedoe passed away on April 24, 2021. He was 82 years old.

According to his obituary, Varnedoe was instrumental in founding the Savannah Scottish games as well as becoming a fundraiser for Armstrong State College, The Alzheimer’s Association and the Savannah Jazz Association.

Varndoe was also known for dressing up as “Batman” and General Oglethorpe for community events.

“We’ll always remember him in the way that he was and always will be in our hearts,” said Jack Boylston, Tybee Beach Bum Parade co-founder.

“The world is better because Gordon walked this earth,” said Julia Pearce, co-founder of Tybee MLK Human Rights Organization.

A staple in the Savannah and Tybee Island community.

“If there was a person that you could say personified the character of Savannah publicly and fun-loving it would be Gordon “Batman” Varnedoe,” said Boylston.

Friends of Varnedoe say he was known as Batman and played the role of the superhero perfectly. He was also known to tell a corny joke or two during every conversation.

“He never got on the phone or got in front of me that he didn’t have a new joke,” said Boylston.

“‘Do you have time for a joke?’ That’s what he would say,” said Judge Tammy Stokes, Chief Judge, Chatham County Recorder’s Court.

Among various accomplishments, he co-founded the Tybee Beach Bum Parade and was instrumental in helping form the Tybee MLK Human Rights organization.

“He gave us so much authenticity and so much originality and so many good ideas,” said Pearce.

Varnedoe was known to see potential in things others didn’t and encourage everyone to build genuine relationships.

“He was just a friend. Just warm, supportive. His laughter, I could hear right now,” said Stokes.

His loss felt deep in the hearts of all who knew him.

“Big! He’s bigger than life,” said Pearce.

“Bigger than life,” said Boylston.

“You’ve lost a person that makes a difference, not talk about make a difference but actually makes a difference,” said Pearce.

Friends say the way he lived his life made their lives richer.

“I wish I could give him a big hug,” said Stokes.

Varnedoe loved being around people and those who knew him say he was engaged in everything his community had to offer.

“There was no organization or group that he didn’t intersect with,” said Pearce.

His obituary says he found the Savannah Scottish Games, became a fundraiser for Armstrong State College, The Alzheimer’s Association and more.

“We love you Gordon,” said Boylston.

His legacy as a true superhero will live on.

“You’ll always be in our hearts.”

Memorials can be made in his honor to Christ Church Episcopal and First African Baptist Church of East Savannah or the charity of your choice.

Please click here to read the full obituary.

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