Lt. Col. William Ernest “Bill” Tyson (US Army, Retired), passed away October 26, 2021. Born April 14, 1942 in Bainbridge, GA, he was the son of the late Ernest Jones Tyson and Hazel Sloan Tyson. Bill’s father died when he was just eight years old, but growing up in the wonderful town of Bainbridge, where it was safe to ride your bikes everywhere, was a real blessing. Throughout his childhood, coaches, Scout leaders, and his First Baptist Church family filled that void for him. Bill was an amazing athlete, excelled in sports and academics, and earned the Eagle Scout. After graduating from Bainbridge High School in 1960, he played football, baseball, and tennis at Presbyterian College while earning his degree in math.
Bill was commissioned to the United States Army in 1964 and served his country with great pride and honor for 22 years. His distinguished military career included two tours in Vietnam, receiving numerous citations and medals for his heroism and bravery. Following retirement, Bill became the beloved tennis coach at E.C. Glass High School in Lynchburg, VA and later pursued his dream job as Captain of Marlin Magic Charters in Wachapreague, VA. Bill adored his family and leaves them with many wonderful memories. His fun-loving nature, contagious laugh, big grin, and the joyful way he lived his life will continue to bring smiles to the faces of all who knew him.
Survivors include his wife, Cheryl Hicks Tyson and son, Sebastian, of Titusville, FL; his daughters, Stacy Groce (Clark) of Canton, GA and Stacey’s mother, Karen Tyson, of Savannah, GA, Kim McEniry (Christopher) of Orlando, FL, and Martha Williams (Courtney) of Charlotte, NC; his sister, Nancy T. Grimsley of Bainbridge; and his wonderful grandchildren, Megan Groce, Clair Groce, Caroline Groce, Claire McEniry, Lulu McEniry, Watts Williams, Haines Williams, and Evie Williams. In addition to his parents, Bill was preceded in death by his precious son, Jeff Tyson; his stepdaughter, Kristen Jewell; and his former wife, BB James Tyson.
A memorial service, with military honors, will be held at Powelton Presbyterian Church, in Wachapreague, VA, on Saturday, May 14, 2022 at 11:00 a.m., followed by a luncheon in the church social hall.
Contributions in Bill’s memory may be made to Friends Ministries, P.O. Box 513, Bainbridge, GA 39818 or to a charity of one’s choice.
Memory tributes may be shared with the family at www.williamsfuneralhomes.com.
Local arrangements by the Williams-Onancock Funeral Home.