Obituary: Billy Ray Clark

Billy Ray Clark, 71, departed this earthly life December 27, 2021. He was born March 9, 1950, in Eagle Mills, AR the baby son of Herbert and Jewel Clark.

He attended Ouachita County High School and graduated on May 22, 1969, as Salutatorian. Earning the title of Salutatorian recognized Billy’s exemplary academic work, and as a result he gave the speech to open the graduation ceremony. That same year Billy, known, as “Double Zero”, helped lead his basketball team to the championship game. After high school he attend Southern State College in Magnolia, Arkansas. Billy later moved to Rockford, Illinois; he married and had two children. He was employed at Gunite Foundry in Rockford, Illinois until he retired. Billy returned to Camden, Arkansas and enjoyed his favorite pastime – “Fishing.”

Billy leaves to cherish his memories: his wife Janet, two daughters during his marriage to Mary Clark-Smith; Summer (Fiancé Larry Turner) Clark; and Autumn (DeMario) Holliman; and daughter Tammi Cannon. Six grandchildren; Jayden, Javion, and Jalyiah Turner; twins A’More and A’Mari Holliman; and Ke’Shawn Cannon. Sister Ada Jean Milton; sisters-in-law Estella Clark and Josephine Wilkins; brothers-in-law Tony Triplett and James Wilkins. A host of nieces, nephews, relatives, and friends. Special nieces Marilyn Berry and Essie Arnold. Special cousin Thomas McElroy. Best friend Howard Parham. Special friends Lorenzo Lambert, Sterling Washington, and Herbert Brown.

Billy was predeceased by his parents; two grandchildren, Carizma Johnson and Aubrey Holliman; four brothers, William, John, Herbert, and Willie Lewis Clark; and four sisters, Carolyn Triplett, Leola Breland, Ernestine Watkins, and Mildrene Wright.

Public visitation will be held Monday, January 10, 2022 from noon until 6:00 p.m. at William Funeral Home Van Buren.


A celebration of his life will be shared Friday, January 14, 2022, at Soar Assembly, 604 Salter Avenue in Rockford, Illinois with Pastor Thomas McElroy, officiating. Interment will be Willwood Burial Park, 7000 W. State Street in Rockford, Illinois with services entrusted to Carl E. Ponds Funeral Home Inc., 200 North Johnson Avenue, Rockford, Illinois.

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