William (Bill) Benjamin Williams III

by Lynn McMillen
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Bill WilliamsWilliam (Bill) Benjamin Williams III passed in his home on Great Oaks Farm in Ripley,

TN on May 27, 2024. Bill was born on December 13, 1937 as the only child to William

Benjamin Williams, Jr. and Margaret Anne Wright. He spent his youth on the family

farms in Ripley and Henning, TN, and summer stints with the family of his uncle John

Walter Wright in Madisonville, KY, who he greatly admired. After high school, he

attended Mississippi State University where he earned a degree in horticulture. Upon

graduation, Bill served in the United States Air Force in Germany, where he developed

a love for the German culture and where he was introduced to equestrian competition,

which became a sustained passion of his.

Upon his return to the States, Bill met and married Mary Treace. Together they shared

a deep love for animals, and Great Oaks Farm became filled with a menagerie of dogs,

cats, chickens, ducks, horses, and cattle. Bill’s marriage to Mary also led to his start in

his lifelong profession in medical sales when he began working with her father at

Richards Medical. Bill’s confident and affable nature, combined with his intellect and gift

of gab, made him one of the top salesman in the industry. Through this journey, Bill was

successful in the build up and sale of companies and product lines along the way. Much

of Bill’s time was spent at conferences and in operating rooms coaching doctors on his

products. He also enjoyed entertaining colleagues on fishing expeditions and pheasant

hunts which led to not only professional success, but to deep and meaningful lifelong


Upon retirement, Bill focused on buying, training, and competing with Tennessee

Walking horses. His efforts of which produced a number of Grand Champions. He

relished his time on the farm, mentoring the younger generation, and supporting a

variety of charities that were meaningful to him.

Bill is predeceased in death by his parents and by his wife Mary. He is survived by a

number of nieces and nephews, as well as Melissa Glenn, who was like a daughter to


Special thanks to Rosemary Boyd, Berdine Boyd, Alaimo Cooper, Rick Goforth, Vicki

and David Rose, and Robert Williams for their love and care over the years.

The funeral service will be held Tuesday, June 4, at First United Church in Ripley.

Visitation will be begin at 12:00 p.m. and the service at 2:00 p.m.Garner Funeral Home

has charge of the services.

In lieu of flowers, memorials can be sent to the First United Methodist Church Margaret

Ann Wright Williams Scholarship Fund or St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

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