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1948 Bill 2016

Bill Jackson

March 30, 1948 — August 26, 2016

Billy Max Jackson was born on March 30, 1948 to Ocie Alton and Maryetta McElreath Jackson in Hobart, Oklahoma and passed from this life August 26, 2016. It was humble beginning. There was no electricity or running water. There were more hard times but they had love, family and Saturday nights. On Saturday afternoons, after a long weeks work, they would go to town to buy ice for the ice box and groceries.

After returning home all the family would gather for the evening. They played cards, dominoes and listened to the Grand Ole Opry. More times than not, they would move the dining room table and dance long into the night. This was the beginning that molded Bill into who he became, the morals he lived by and the black and white views he saw in his life.

His dad had severe heart problems so the decision was made to move to Oklahoma City to be close to the heart specialist when Bill was young. Bill was a graduate of Capitol Hill High School in 1966. There he met his soon to be wife, Mary Parker Jackson. After her graduation in 1967, the very next night they married.

In November of that same year he was drafted into the Army and after boot camp he was sent straight to Vietnam. It was something he never talked about after returning home.

His first born son, Alton Ray, was born in 1970. In 1972 Bill announced, we are moving to the country, so Blanchard-Chickasha here we came. His second son, Kevin Wayne, was born in 1974. In 1975 Bill was laid off from Western Electric. With two kids and a mortgage we had to do something to provide for our family. We hauled hay. Mary drove the truck with Kevin in his infant seat. Bill stacked the hay while Alton helped him or tried to help him. We didn't starve but we thought we were going to. When winter came we cut wood. This was going downhill fast. Thank God, his cousin called and said I can get you a job at the Oklahoma State Reformatory at Granite. That started his career with the Department of Corrections.

After a few promotions and a few moves in between, we came to Helena in 1986 thinking this was another stop on our journey, but roots began to grow and somehow we stayed. Bill retired from Crabtree Correction Center in May 2003. While with the Department he was able to help grow and nurture many others in their career with the Department.

One of his greatest blessings came in 2001 when he was able to reunite with his Vietnam Army buddies. He loved their reunions and the time they were together. A lot of healing was done at this time.

His other joys were fishing, farming and raising cattle, but by far his greatest joy was when he could spend time with his grandkids.

He was saved and baptized and is a member of the First Baptist Church in Helena. In the last weeks and months his faith has grown beyond measure. It is that faith that has seen him through the worst days of his life.

He is preceded in death by his parents, Alton and Maryetta Jackson; one infant sister, Glenda Ann; one older brother, Glenn Ray who was killed in an accident by a drunk driver.

He is survived by his wife, MARY JACKSON of the home; his oldest son, Alton Ray of Helena; his youngest son, Kevin Wayne and wife, Monique of Fargo, North Dakota and a niece who was the daughter we could never have, Mindy Adams and husband, Jay of Mustang. He was blessed beyond measure by his grandchildren, Kimber, Kedric and Kashen of Helena, Dylan, Colby and Bryson of Fargo, North Dakota; one sister, Tina Hawkins and husband, Jerry Don of Cordell; one brother, Bobby Jackson and wife, Mari of Minco. Some people are lucky to have one true friend but Bill is survived by four: Jerry Nelson, TomEd Eberhardt, Brent Fatkin and Mike Pattison, along with a long host of other family members and friends.

Funeral service for Bill will be Wednesday, August 31, 2016 at 2:00 p.m. at the Timberlake High School Auditorium in Helena with burial at Square Cedar Cemetery. Viewing will be Monday, August 29, 2016 from 12:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Tuesday, August 30, 2016 from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to the Helena Lions Club or the First Baptist Church of Helena for youth camp through the funeral home.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Bill Jackson, please visit our flower store.

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