Photography

Louis Paul Hartley

December 8, 1953 ~ March 31, 2022 (age 68)

Obituary

Louis Paul Hartley passed away on March 31, 2022 in Fleming Island, FL. He was born on December 8, 1953 and at age 9 was adopted, along with his siblings Freddy and Janice, by Robert and Elizabeth Hartley.

The brave Hartley family adopted three children whom had been living in foster homes most of their lives and moved them to their new home in New Orleans, LA. This is where Louis’s love of fishing, boxing and football began.

While Louis was in high school, the family relocated to Memphis, TN. There he met and married his high school sweetheart, Jan, to whom he would have been married 50 years this upcoming June. The couple then moved just outside of Memphis to Jonesboro AR with their first son, Bobby, and five years later Jason was born. In 1982, Louis committed his life to the Lord and became a soldier for God with his warrior mentality. He was an exceptional building contractor and developer. From residential neighborhoods, to churches, gymnasiums and large fitness facilities, his attention to detail and overall understanding of construction was second to none. Louis’s building projects still stand today in TN, AR, TX and FL. The architect Sir Christopher Wren, who built over fifty churches in London, most notably St. Paul’s Cathedral was quoted saying, “If you seek his monument, just look around you.” Also while in Jonesboro, he and Jan opened Jonesboro Gymnastics and together coached hundreds of children to advanced levels. Many of those students have gone on to be doctors, lawyers, surgeons, coaches and even the 1990 “Miss America.” He was especially proud of his competitive team, “Pieces of Eight.”

In 1986, the family moved to Jacksonville, FL to pursue various endeavors in the construction and sign business. Of course, his passion for fishing continued in the St. John’s River, Atlantic Ocean, Gulf of Mexico and southern LA. His infamous offshore boat named “Fish Tales” had a highly illustrated career with his brilliant fishing mind at the helm. His secret mastery of jig fishing resulted in a limited out-boat full of fish on most trips. The local charter captains were puzzled at this amateur fisherman out-catching them by ten times. His knowledge of the oil rigs and his ability to follow the smallest of signs to locate fish were incredible. If you were fortunate to have fished under his direction, you were watching a true master at work. It should also be mentioned that if you were dumb enough to join his offshore fishing trip and got seasick, just consider your entire 12-hour day a deep cleansing. He would offer some great words of encouragement like “put on a skirt and get to the back of the boat Nancy.” Then he would add that chumming is good for fishing.

Louis coached both sons from a very young age through high school. His final ten years of coaching were at Trinity Christian Academy. His offensive and defensive strategy, film study, preparation and play calling is likely still used there today. He took great pride in preparing his athletes to mentally compete the toughest opponents. Many of those players played at the next level and several went on to the Pros. His brilliant play-calling and discernment led to countless particular game changing moments etched in time. He taught each to have the warrior attitude every time they went to battle. Louis’s pre-game pep talks stuck with those players throughout life. The following are in their words: faith over fear, play like you got a pair, whoever believes the longest wins, go punish them, never play on your heels, attack, dominate, believe that my bad is badder than your bad, we are going to smash them in the mouth for four quarters on both sides of the ball, get out there and kick their asses! His aggressive form of motivating will echo through eternity.

Louis used his warrior spirit throughout his life to protect and provide for his family. He was a friend and father to many young athletes, many of whom are here today. Though he loved being called “Coach” and “Captain”, the name he was most proud of came from his grandchildren who called him “Poppa.”           

The legacy and spirit of Louis Hartley will live on within everyone he touched and everyone they will touch in the future. He was a son, a husband, a father, a brother, a grandfather, a brother-in-law, an uncle, a builder, a fisherman, a coach, a warrior, and most of all a believer to the end.

Louis was preceded in death by his parents, Robert and Elizabeth Hartley and his siblings, David and Janice.

Louis is survived by his loving wife, Jan Hartley; children, Bobby and Jason Hartley; grandchildren, Caden Hartley and Darin Glover and daughter-in-law, Malia Hartley.

A visitation will be held on Saturday, April 9, 2022 at 4:00 p.m. with a memorial service following at 4:30 p.m. both at Aaron and Burney Bivens Funeral Home, 529 Kingsley Avenue, Orange Park, FL 32073, (904) 264-1233.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the Bob Tebow Evangelistic Association.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Louis, please visit our floral store.


Services

Visitation
Saturday
April 9, 2022

4:00 PM to 4:30 PM
Aaron and Burney Bivens Funeral Home and Cremation Services
529 Kingsley Avenue
Orange Park, FL 32073

Celebration of Life
Saturday
April 9, 2022

4:30 PM
Aaron and Burney Bivens Funeral Home and Cremation Services
529 Kingsley Avenue
Orange Park, FL 32073

Video is available for this event


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