“He was the basketball star, and I just fell in love with him.”

That’s the way Lana Bishop explains how her 47 plus year relationship with her husband David Bishop began back in the day at La Follette High School.  Bishop passed away Saturday after a courageous battle with cancer.

David Bishop owned and operated the Big Rock Tavern for more than two decades

Former La Follette Owl teammate Gary Gray said, “Bish, to his friends, was quick with a smile and quick with the hand to take a basketball from you.”  He learned a lot from Bishop and fondly remembered him as a great competitor.  Gray described Bishop’s skills as well rounded in that he could shoot the ball, rebound and pass equally as well.  Bish’s temperament is also something that has stayed with Gray all these almost 50 years in that he never got angry and was a very clean player; a gentleman on and off the court.

Bishop, successful in sports and later in business, owned and operated the Big Rock Tavern, on the north side of La Follette, for more than 20 years.

Lee Blankenship and her husband, Carl, bought Big Rock Tavern from the Bishops earlier this year.   Bishop was a “very nice guy and a most generous person,” Lee Blankenship said.  She’s heard story after story of his kindness especially since Saturday, she added.

Bishop was a key member of some really good LHS teams coached by Jerry Dagley.  Bish stayed close to his old coach all these years, and Dagley is scheduled to officiate his funeral tonight.

The family receives friends this evening from 5 pm to 7 pm with the funeral services at 7 pm at Walters Funeral Home.  Though the tavern is open today, and will be again tomorrow.  “That’s what David would want us to do,” said Lee Blankenship.  His interment is Wednesday morning at Campbell Memorial Gardens.

David Bishop was 68 years old.  (WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED – 11/06/2018-6AM)