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The Rev. William A. Parker III

The Rev. William A. Parker III, 76, passed away peacefully on Sept. 24, 2021, at Bethany House in Auburn.

He was a wonderful husband to Linda, a loving father, grandfather, brother, and friend.

Bill was born in Birmingham on Feb. 11, 1945, to William A. Parker, Jr. and Arzola Johnson Parker.

He graduated from Ensley High School, Anderson University (BA), Georgia State University (MS), and attended Candler School of Theology.

Bill was a man of many gifts and talents. However, he was uncomfortable speaking of them. So, we will speak of them now.

His career began as an administrator for an extended care/nursing home facility and encompassed many turns along the way. His career included working for the Georgia Office on Aging, Project Focus (now known as the Area Agencies on Aging), and AARP in its early years. The one common theme in all Bill endeavored to do was service. His humble and gentle spirit were a dynamic part of his ministry.

Though he had many fulfilling roles along the way, nothing suited him better than serving as hospice chaplain for Chattahoochee Hospice, a position he actually held part-time in the late 1980s and came back to from 2007 until his retirement.

Bill also served as pastor of many churches in the area. He was pastor of Oak Bowery United Methodist Church until his death.

In 1994, Bill married Linda Ray Batson, and his life was complete. Anyone that knows Bill and Linda know how close they are as a couple. If you were ever with Bill when Linda called, as he hung up, he would look at the phone and exclaim, “God, I love that woman!”

Motorcycles, camping, and any outdoor activity with Linda were his favorite pastimes.

Bill was preceded in death by his parents, William A. Parker, Jr. and Arzola Johnson Parker; his daughter, Kristin Parker; and his brother, Bob. He is survived by his wife, Linda; his son Chris (Jennifer) Parker; daughter, Penelope (Jimmy) Strater; Bill’s bonus children, Jenny Batson and Jeff Batson; grandchildren, Meredith and Zoe Parker, Thomas and Melinda Strater; sister in law, Sharon; nephew, Terry (Kathy) Parker; nieces, Connie (Robert) Poteete, Cathy (Sam) Byrd.

Visitation will be held at the Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home in Valley on Friday, Oct. 1, from 5 p.m. EDT to 7 p.m. EDT or 4 p.m. CDT to 6 p.m. CDT. Due to Covid-19 concerns, the family requests that all visitors wear face masks.

A service celebrating Bill’s life and homegoing will be held at his beloved Oak Bowery United Methodist Church, 4050 US 431, LaFayette, Alabama 36862 on Saturday, Oct. 2, at noon EDT or 11 a.m. CDT.  Visitation will be held at the church from 11 a.m. EDT to 11:45 a.m. EDT or from 10 a.m. CDT to 10:45 a.m. CDT.  Those in attendance are asked to wear face masks.

The family wishes to express gratitude for all the love and kindness throughout this time. Donations in memory of Bill may be made to Oak Bowery United Methodist Church, 4050 US-431, Lafayette, Alabama, 36862 or the Spencer Cancer Center, 2501 Village Professional Drive, Opelika, Alabama, 36801.   

Please visit his memorial tribute page at www.johnsonbrownservicefh.com to leave a kind word for his family, share a memory of Bill, or to light a remembrance candle in his memory.

Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home in Valley is directing.