William C. "Cy" Williams, age 93, of Port St. Joe, FL, passed away, peacefully, on New Year's Day. "Papa Cy", as he was affectionately known by both family and friends, spent his last moments praising the Lord, with his family by his side.
Mr. Williams was born in Port St. Joe, FL on June 23, 1920. He attended Port St Joe High School, where he was an outstanding athlete in football, basketball, baseball, and boxing. In 1942, he volunteered to enter the U.S. Army, becoming a Military Police officer. He then volunteered for a special operation where he served on a Victory ship, carrying ammunition to Europe. After arriving in Europe, he participated in invasions in both Sicily and North Africa. His return to the U.S. included transporting of German prisoners. During the return voyage, his ship was torpedoed by German submarines, but managed to make it back to port in New Jersey, with no casualties.
After safely returning to the U.S., he was stationed in Chicago, IL. He worked as an undercover detective, in conjunction with the Chicago Police Department. His operation included exposing and apprehending Chicago gang members, associated with Al Capone, which were fleecing U.S. Military men, returning from overseas.
During his time in Chicago, he also played for the U.S. Army football and basketball teams, where he received medals for his achievements in sports. He was also recognized as one of the Top 10 Athletes in the U.S. Military and was recruited by Northwestern University football team. Choosing instead to be with family, Mr. Williams decided to return home to Port St. Joe, where he spent the majority of his life.
Upon returning home, he worked as a Head Machinist for the Apalachicola Northern Railroad in Port St. Joe and the White Pass & Yukon Railroad in Alaska. While in Alaska he coached the semi-pro basketball team, The Thunderbirds, and led them to the Gold Medal Tournament where they brought home the Championship Trophy.
An avid fisherman and gardener, Mr. Williams also served as a Deacon and a Lay Pastor. Throughout his life, his proudest moments were serving the Lord and witnessing to all that he met.
He was preceded in death by parents, C.C. and Iva Williams and brother, Ben Williams.
He is survived by wife, Christine Williams; sister, Sissy Farris; son, Edward "Buddy" Williams and wife Peggy; daughters Sandra Williams Godfrey and husband Rick; and Juwana Williams Combs and husband Glen; stepdaughter: Alice Martin; stepson: Bobby Lightfoot; grandchildren: Cheri Jalbert and husband, Ronnie; Chris Williams and husband, Troy; Stone Swatts; Jeff Williams and wife, Erica; Ashley Combs; Robert Combs and wife, Kelli; Dana Swatts; Rush Combs; and Christana Hayden and husband, Chris; great-grandchildren: Austin Williams, Jacob Combs and wife, Jessie; Jackson Combs; Trey Humphrey and Courtney; Lexi Combs; Abby Swatts; Campbell Swatts; Camryn Swatts; Joshua Jalbert; Jesse Williams; and Allena Williams; great-great grandchildren, Clay Humphrey and Madison Combs, along with numerous nieces and nephews.
Visitation was held 5-7 p.m. EST on Monday, January 6 at Comforter Funeral home in Port St. Joe, FL. Funeral services were held 1 p.m. EST Tuesday, January 7 at Holy Hill Cemetery, in Port St. Joe.