WAYCROSS — Elias Adam Tatum, 86, of Waycross died Saturday afternoon, June 20, 2020, at his residence after an extended illness. He was born in Waycross to the late George H. Tatum and Lottie Wildes Tatum and made Ware County his home for his entire life. A veteran of the United States Army, Tatum had a deep love for his country and always enjoyed celebrating the 4th of July. A master carpenter, he worked for numerous contractors in the Waycross area, including, Skeeter Harvey, Lamar Johnson, Steve Eunice, Bob Trogdon, Brantley Thrift, and Lamar Smith. At the time of his retirement, Tatum was the owner and operator of Tatum Construction. He was a member of Williams Chapel Church. The family was the most important part of his life. His wife, Jo, was the love of his life, and the 60 years they spent together was the most precious to him. He was a firm believer in building character in his daughters and grandchildren. He took great pride in knowing the life lessons he taught would live on through them every one of their lives. Taking trips and going camping with his family was something Tatum always cherished. In 1976, he began a tradition of family trips to Walt Disney World. Tatum also enjoyed spending time in the mountains. A man his entire life, he had a love for the rodeo and continuously followed it with the Pro Rodeo Sports News. Tatum had a love for the swamp, fishing and boat riding. Along with his parents, Tatum was preceded in death by one brother, James Hamilton “Hamp” Tatum, and six sisters, Lavenia Bell Tatum, Margaret Simerly, Doris Douglas, Melissie Howell, Lottie Mae Vanhoy, and Kathleen Pedrick. Tatum is survived by his wife, Jo Tatum, of Waycross; four daughters, Della Henderson and her husband, Don, of Waycross, Selena Thomas and her husband, Jimmy, of Waycross, Eva Jane Thomas and her husband, Anthony, of Waycross, Amanda Stewart and her husband Wayne, of Waycross; six grandchildren, Hannah Kirk and her husband, Cory, Lottie Thomas, Martha Thomas, Mary Kathryn Henderson, Emmie Stewart, Jackson Stewart; one sister, Jane Bennett and her husband, John, of Waycross; two brothers, George Tatum Sr., of Waycross, Toomer Tatum and his wife, Betty Sue, of Waycross; two brothers-in-law, Robert Corbitt and his wife, Sandy, of North Carolina, Donald Corbitt and his wife, Margaret, of Waycross; two sisters-in-law, Annette Corbitt, of Blackshear, Azilee “Dinky” Meredith, of Jacksonville; and numerous nieces, nephews and other relatives. A funeral was held at 11 a.m., Tuesday, June 23, at his residence, 2126 Lottie Tatum Road, Waycross. Burial followed in the Elias A. Tatum Family Cemetery. The family received friends at the residence at 6 p.m. on Monday, June 22. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Hospice Satilla, 808 Evergreen Way, Waycross, Georgia, 31501, or to Campground Ministries, 2210 Screven Ave., Waycross, Georgia, 31501. Sympathy may be expressed by signing online at www.milesodumfuneralhome.com