Friday, April 19, 2024

Colonel William “Bill” R. Williamson, United States Army (Retired), 85, of Williamsburg

Colonel William “Bill” R. Williamson (Weymouth Funeral Home & Crematory)

Colonel William “Bill” R. Williamson, United States Army (Retired), 85, passed away at the VCU Health Center in Richmond, VA on November 9, 2023, with his family by his side. A true American hero, Bill was one of the most dedicated and respected career Army Officers. He will be remembered as a loving husband and devoted family man. Bill became quite the traveler in his retirement, often visiting his children and grandchildren, and exploring the world, hand in hand with his wife, Kaye.

Bill attended the United States Military Academy at West Point and was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the Infantry upon graduation in 1961. He graduated from the Basic Infantry Officers Course, Airborne School, Pathfinder School and Ranger School and was assigned to the 2nd Airborne Battle Group of the 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment at Fort Bragg, NC where he served as an Infantry Platoon Leader, Recon Platoon Leader and Headquarters and Headquarters Company Commander. He subsequently was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 16th Infantry Regiment in Vietnam where he served as the Battalion S-4 for four months before assuming command of A Company, 1st Battalion, 16th Infantry in November of 1966. He remained in command until June of 1967 participating in the major battles of Ap Gu (1 April 1967) and LZ X-Ray (17 June 1967). He went on to command the 2nd Battalion (Mechanized), 60th Infantry Regiment, 9th Infantry Division at Fort Lewis, WA and the 3rd Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard) at Fort Myer, VA.

During his career, Bill was awarded the Combat Infantryman’s Badge, the Senior Parachutists Badge, the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Silver Star, two Legion of Merit awards, two Bronze Stars for Valor, three Bronze Stars for Meritorious Service, the Purple Heart, two Meritorious Service Medals and two Air Medals.

Upon retirement in 1987, Bill became a manager with First Transit which is a company that specializes in out-sourced management of public transit systems throughout the United States and Canada. In 2000 he moved to Williamsburg, VA and in 2001, and until his second retirement in 2012, he was a Region Vice President for First Transit responsible for the oversight of multiple contracts arrayed along the east coast of the United States from Manchester, NH to Mobile, AL. While in this position, he was selected to receive the President’s Award for his significant contributions to First Transit. Bill was also actively involved in the James City Lions Club, the Crown Colony Club and was a member of several resident committees at Williamsburg Landing.

Bill was born in Williamsport, PA, and was preceded in death by his wife of 48 years, Bobbie. He is survived by his wife of 14 years, Kaye Williamson of Williamsburg, VA; Bill’s daughters, Debbie and husband, Earl Dinkler, Sandie and husband, Tom Roberts, Laurie and husband, Scott Phillips, and sons, Scott and wife, Mary Beth Williamson, and Tim and wife, Nancy Williamson; as well as Kaye’s sons, Michael and wife, Karen Allen, Kevin and wife, Jill Allen and niece, Sarah and husband, Mike Spata; family friend, Jennifer and husband, JR Ryal; his brother, Don Williamson and wife, Joanne, as well as 14 grandchildren.

A Celebration of Life Service will be held at 3 p.m. on Sunday, December 3, 2023 at Williamsburg Landing in Williamsburg, VA. Burial will take place at a later date at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, VA with Full Military Honors. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations in Bill’s memory be sent to Disabled American Veterans, P.O. Box 14301, Cincinnati, OH 45250-0301 or the USO, PO Box 96860, Washington, DC 20077.

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