Clifford Odell Williams

Published 2:23 pm Thursday, January 5, 2017

Clifford Odell Williams, 95, of Nederland, died Monday, January 2, 2017. He was born October 17, 1921, in Village Mills, Texas.  Clifford was the oldest son of Johnny and Lucy Williams.

He graduated from Silsbee High School and joined the US Army Aircorp prior to WWII. Clifford was a pilot of a P-38 fighter in the European theater during WWII.  He was shot down over France on a mission a few weeks before the Normandy invasion and was hidden from capture by the French Underground until his liberation three months later. Following WWII, he began working at the Neches Butane Company in Port Neches, where he worked until his retirement in 1987. There, he met the love of his life, Mary Pratt. They married in 1950 and enjoyed a wonderful life together until her death in 2003. Clifford was very active in his church, was a founding member of the Wesley United Methodist church on Helena Avenue. He served in various roles, helping to establish a solid foundation for Wesley’s growth. He was active in City Government in the 1970s, serving on the planning and zoning committee. In retirement Clifford and Mary enjoyed painting and were members of the Art Guild in Nederland. Clifford was a member of the Air Force Escape and Evasion Society (AFEES) and the 55th Fighter Group Association, attending their annual meeting and events with other former aviators.

Survivors include his children, John C. Williams and his wife, Mary Lou; Charles P. Williams; and Luanne R. Bilke and her husband, Ted; grandchildren, Thomas C. Williams and his wife, Stephanie; Laura M. Lind and her husband, John Paul; Matthew A. Bilke; and Clayton P. Bilke.

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Memorial contributions for Mr. Williams may be made to USO, PO Box 96860 Washington, DC 20077-7677 or Wesley United Methodist Church, 3515 Helena Avenue, Nederland, Texas 77627.

A gathering of Mr. Williams’ family and friends will be from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m., Friday, January 6, 2017, at Broussard’s, 505 North 12th Street, Nederland. His funeral service will be 1:00 p.m., Saturday, January 7, 2017, at Wesley United Methodist Church, 3515 Helena Avenue, Nederland, with his graveside service to follow at 3:45 p.m. at Holland Cemetery, Holland Cemetery Road, Kountze.

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