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John Williams

September 13, 1939 ~ June 19, 2018 (age 78)

John (Johnny) Dale Williams lived a full life until he passed away on June 19, 2018. After battling a long illness and defying the odds for 7 years, Johnny left this life and his body at home, surrounded by his family. He was born September 13, 1939 in Kaufman, Texas. Johnny’s commitment to family and friends was paramount in his life. His work was his passion. Many knew him fondly as “Road Hand”, and that he was, for over 50 years. Johnny came from humble beginnings and was a self-made man, as he built his career in the road construction business. He was known for his expertise in the industry, his drive and outstanding work ethic.

Johnny lived his adult life in Athens, Texas where he and his wife, Lanita made a wonderful home for their family. Johnny and Lanita had the privilege of celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary just last week. Johnny is survived by his wife, Lanita Williams, daughters Talina McElhany and Traci Anderson, grandchildren Wesley McElhany and wife, Jasmine McElhany, Kimberly Harris and husband, Ben Harris, John McElhany, Marci Anderson, Natali Anderson and great grandchildren Corinne McElhany, Evan McElhany, and Ainsley Harris. He is survived by brother Ricky Williams and wife, Sherry Williams, brother-in-law Sonny Sims and numerous nieces and nephews.

Johnny was preceded in death by his parents, Otis and Naomi Williams, brothers D.O. Williams, Bryan Williams, and Jerry Williams, sisters Joyce Reynolds, Betty Williams, JoLean Brooks, and Mary Ann Sims.

A Life Celebration service will be held Saturday, June 23, 2018 at the First United Methodist Church, Athens, Texas. The family will receive friends for a time of visitation beginning at 12:00 o'clock noon with the Life Celebration service beginning at 1:00 o'clock. Family and friends are invited to attend a lunch immediately following the service. Please send floral tributes to First United Methodist, Athens by 11:30 o'clock Saturday morning or to Welch Funeral Home in Longview, Texas by 4:00 o'clock Friday afternoon.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Hospice of East Texas, 4111 University Blvd., Tyler, Texas 75701.
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