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November 29, 2015
W. Vance Grant Jr.
Mar 21, 2014 | 0 0 comments | 74 74 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Funeral services for W. Vance Grant Jr., 89, of Atlanta, formerly of Cornelia, are scheduled for 11 a.m., Saturday, March 22, at First Baptist Church Cornelia with the Rev. John Swindler, the Rev. Pennington Russell and the Rev. David P. Gushee officiating. Burial will follow in Level Grove Cemetery.

Mr. Grant died Wednesday, March 19, 2014, due to multiple myeloma.

Born Sept. 3, 1924, in Gainesville, he was the son of the late W. Vance and Myrtle Haynes Grant.

During his early years the family lived in Clermont, before moving to Cornelia. After finishing high school there, Vance graduated, at age 18, from Piedmont College with a bachelor’s degree in history and government before serving in the U.S. Navy on board a submarine chaser during World War II.

After the war he earned a degree in business administration from the University of Georgia and a master’s degree in psychology from Columbia University. At Florida State University, while earning a master’s degree in another branch of psychology, he met and married Earlynn Vance, his wife of 61 years. He worked as a statistician for the state of Florida until 1954, when he and his wife moved to the Washington, D.C., area where he later earned a Ph.D. in political science from the University of Maryland. Mr. Grant worked for the U.S. Army, helping to rewrite the Army Qualifying Test before transferring to the U.S. Office of Education (later the National Center for Education Statistics) where he worked as a specialist in the statistics of education. He was a writer and editor for the agency and was referred to by his colleagues as “Mr. Information.” The breadth of his knowledge of American education enabled him to answer questions of Members of Congress, the White House, presidential candidates preparing for debates, the press, foreign governments and the public. After his retirement in 2002, he and his wife moved to Jackson, Tenn., and, in 2011, to Atlanta.

Mr. Grant enjoyed life and had many interests, including Big Band music, old movies, travel in this country including all 48 contiguous states, and also traveled in Mexico, Canada, and Europe, especially Great Britain. He played in many duplicate-bridge tournaments, achieving the rank of Silver Life master. He was an enthusiastic follower of the political scene and Major League Baseball. A lifelong Baptist, since moving to Atlanta, Vance has been a member of First Baptist Church of Decatur.

Survivors include his wife, Earlynn V. Grant of Atlanta; son, James V. Grant of Louisville, Ky.; daughter and son-in-law, Jeanie and David P. Gushee of Atlanta; grandchildren, Holly Love and husband, Jonathan Love, David G. Gushee, Marie Gushee.

The family will receive friends at the funeral home from 4-6 p.m. today, March 21.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to First Baptist Church Cornelia, P.O. Box 96, Cornelia, GA 30531; First Baptist Church Decatur, 308 Clairemont Ave., Decatur, GA 30030.

Those wishing to express online condolences to the Grant family may do so by visiting

Arrangements are in the care of Whitfield Funeral Home, South Chapel, Baldwin.

The Northeast Georgian

Friday, March 21, 2014