William Allen Harris commonly known as “Will” was born into this life on March 7, 1957, in Arkadelphia, Arkansas. He was raised by his grandparents, Ruben, Sr., and Tennie Edmondson who taught him the value of handwork and being a true friend.
He graduated from Arkadelphia High School in 1975 and attended Red River Technical College in Hope, Arkansas. He united with St. Paul A.M.E. Church on April 18, 1976, under the pastorate of Rev. R. N. Thomas. He started a longtime career on June 27, 1983, with the Arkadelphia Water Department as a customer service representative. Resultant of his strong work ethic, he received the Jack R. Rhodes, Sr. Distinguished Service Award for 25 years of service to the City of Arkadelphia. He retired on October 8, 2021, after 37 years.
He married Lucille Dawkins in August of 2005, and his life was blessed with the addition of a bonus daughter and a grandson.
Will truly enjoyed the simple pleasures that life offered. He enjoyed being retired and was often seen driving around town with his companion dog, “Pup”. In the uncanniest sense, Will found a way to simply “rub you the wrong way” on purpose. To be in Will’s presence was to know that you were guaranteed to laugh, have fun, smile, jokingly banter, and learn something that you never knew.
On Tuesday, February 7, 2023, William passed from this life. He was preceded in death by his mother, Tennie Marie Jefferson Martin; his grandparents, Ruben “Snook” Edmondson, Sr., and Tennie C. Edmondson; a sister, Wanda Jean Gibson, and a sister-in-law, Maria Ollison.
He leaves his wife, Lucille; a bonus daughter, Tia S. (Sebastian) Stephens of Dallas, TX, and a grandson, Aiden; his beloved sisters, Judy K. Hill of Arkadelphia, AR, and Tonja B. Martin of Dallas, TX; brothers, Cody L. Hunter of Arkadelphia, AR, Lee Andrew (Paulette) Martin of Dallas, TX, Anthony B. Martin and Eric D. Martin both of Hot Springs, AR; and his uncle, Ruben Edmondson, Jr., of Los Angeles, CA. He also leaves nieces and nephews, Keshia Martin, Stephanie Martin, Latrice Martin, Nicole Martin, DeShawna Martin, Cameka Thompson, Alexander DeWayne Newborn, Elma Lee Gibson, III, Eric “RoRo” Lamar Martin, Cody Hunter, Jr., and DeMarcus Johnikins; special friends Aubrey Hill, David Thomason, Lisa McNeese, Ollie Buckley, and Levi Garland, as well as, his buddies at the Arkadelphia Water Department.
1 Thessalonians 4:13-14: Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope. For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him.
Visitation will be from 1:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. on Friday, February 17, 2023, at the funeral home.
A homegoing celebration will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, February 18, 2023, at Williams Funeral Home with Rev. Kenneth Rhodes, officiating. The interment will be at Richmond Hill Cemetery. Pallbearers will be Ollie Buckley, O’Brian Dominick, Levi Garland, Eric Martin, Jr., Larry Murry, and Jeff Utsey. Honorary pallbearers will be Lee Andrew Martin, Anthony Martin, Eric “Shawn” Martin, Cody Hunter, David Thompson, and Joshua Ware.
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