***NOTE: www.ajc.com has a photo and a guestbook***
LIVER PERRY "SONNY" ACKERMAN, JR. After bravely fighting health issues for many years, Oliver Perry "Sonny" Ackerman, Jr., died peacefully January 20, at the age of 73. Sonny will always be remembered for his compassion for others, his love of sports, his keen wit, and his capacity to never meet a stranger. Every life he touched would be forever enriched and each individual he met knew they would have a friend for a lifetime. Sonny, beloved husband of Jane Powell Ackerman was born on June 15, 1932 in Preston, GA. Sonny is survived by wife Jane, children and their spouses Oliver P. "Dusty" and Mary Ackerman, LuAnn and Hardeman Godbee and mother Billie Bell Ackerman. His beautiful grandchildren were Sonny's heart Cody and Haylie Ackerman, Billie and Jake Jones, and Perri Budd. He is preceded in death by his father Oliver P. Ackerman and brother, James Ackerman.
Sonny served in the Marine Corps where he played quarterback at Paris Island, SC. He graduated from Georgia State University and began a successful 30 year career in the Atlanta Real Estate market. In 1984 a life changing accident caused Sonny to lose his leg and begin a second career dedicated to teaching the physically and mentally challenged the game of golf. Sonny began the Adaptive Golf Foundation and has brought inspiration and hope to hundreds across the U.S. In a recently published book about Georgia's greatest athletes and leading citizens entitled LegendsGeorgians Who Lived Impossible Dreams author Gene Asher wrote "Never mind that Oliver Perry "Sonny" Ackerman won three American and Three Canadian national Senior Amputee Golf Championships. Never mind that his Atlanta Athletic Club Hall of Fame plaque hangs alongside those of Bobby Jones, Charlie Yates and Alexis Sterling. What matters most is the care and concern this native Atlantan shows for his fellow human beings.' Sonny will be remembered fondly by friends and family. Visitation with the family will be held Sunday, January 22 from 6-8 P.M. The funeral service will be held Monday January 23 at 11:00 A.M. at Crowell Brothers Peachtree Chapel, 5051 Peachtree Industrial Blvd., Norcross, Georgia 770-448-5757. In lieu of flowers, if desired, a donation may be made to the Adaptive Golf Foundation, P.O. Box 1135, Suwanee, GA 30024. Crowell Brothers Funeral Home, Norcross (770)448-5757. Published in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on 1/22/2006.