Anthony "Tony" C. Carmichael was born in Zanesville, Ohio, the fourth of seven children, to William and Beryl Carmichael (Bailey). Tony enlisted in the US Army after graduating from Zanesville High School. He served two tours in Vietnam where he earned a National Defense Service Medal as well as Vietnam Service and Campaign medals. After leaving the army, Tony earned an Associates in Electrical Engineering from Zane State College (previously Muskingum Area Technical College). Tony became the first black engineer in the Ohio Bell Southeast Ohio Division. He later worked for AT&T and then Lucent Technologies as an Engineering Instructor, where he traveled across the world teaching fiber optics and big switch engineering. His career took him to Egypt, the Philippines, Brazil, Australia, Saudi Arabia, and Germany, among others. Tony retired from Lucent Technologies in 1999 and worked as a bus driver for the Columbus City Schools and as a private construction contractor.
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When not working or spending time with family, Tony loved to be near and on the water. He was an avid fisherman and boater. He was also a PADI certified Rescue Diver, and enjoyed scuba diving in various oceans, all over the world. He enjoyed working on construction projects and was a skilled craftsman. He would often help friends and family with home repairs and construction projects. He enjoyed music very much and played saxophone and sang in many choirs. Throughout his life Tony was very active in his Christian faith. Most recently he was a member of Asbury North United Methodist Church, where he served as a delegate to the National United Methodist Conference.
Most of all, Tony loved his family. In his later years, he would remark at how blessed he felt for the life he had lived and for the people God had put in his life along his journey. He and his wife Irma had many adventures together, including traveling on mission trips to countries in central Africa. They also restored a beautiful historical home together which was featured in Tour of Homes events and in publications. He adored his four grandchildren (Jasmine, Jaliliah, Ian Jr. and Nia) and was an active an important part of their lives.
Tony leaves behind his wife, Irma Phillips – Carmichael; daughter, Jamie Carmichael whom he had with his first wife and friend, Joyce Carmichael; step daughter, Rebecca Smith (Preddie); son-in-law, Ian Preddie; Grandchildren, Jasmine, Jalilah, Ian Jr and Nia. He also leaves behind his sisters, Judith Jones (Carmichael), and Lois Ford (Carmichael), and his brothers James Carmichael and Patrice Carmichael (Paula Carmichael), as well as many beloved nieces and nephews. He also leaves behind many friends whom he loved dearly.
Tony truly lived life to the fullest. His outgoing nature, his wisecracks, generosity, intelligence and loving spirit will be deeply missed by all who knew him.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests sending memorial contributions to:
Asbury United Methodist Church – Children’s Ministry: Tony had a love for Asbury and was a regular contributor to and participant in children’s ministry activities. Please indicate “Asbury UMC Children’s Ministry”.
The American Music Therapy Association – Tony loved music. A scholarship program will be established in his memory for a student pursing multicultural coursework in music therapy. Please indicate “The Anthony C. Carmichael Award” in the notes section that reads “In Memory Of” www.musictherapy.org – Click Donate button on left side of homepage – Scroll down to “AMTA Scholarship Donation” and click to enter amount and Award name.