WILLIAM EDWARD GREEN, 87
HAINES CITY - William Edward Green, 87, passed away peacefully on May 1st, 2014 at Heart of Florida Hospital in Haines City due to respiratory failure.
He was preceded in death by his wife of 64 years, Rachel Powell Green; son, Richard Britt; grandson, Bruce Murphy; parents, Andrew Green and Bessie Mae Rigdan Green; maternal grandparents, who raised him, Joshua R. Rigdan and Victoria Rigdan; and siblings, Emma Green, Peggy Mae Green, and Hampton Andrew Green.
He leaves behind sons, Gary William Green Georgia and Scott Edward Green Debra ; daughter-in-law, Margaret Britt, six grandchildren, and nine great grandchildren.
William "Bill" was born on February 15th, 1927 in Union County, FL. After losing both of his parents, he was raised by his maternal grandparents on their farm in Sanderson, FL. After high school, he served in the United States Army as a jumpmaster in the 101st Airborne Division Screaming Eagles , seeing combat in WWII and Korean War.
After the war, he met his future wife, Rachel, at a square dance. In an interview for a school project by one of his grandchildren Mason , he described her as "quiet, shy, beautiful and he loves everything about her."
Bill started his business, W.E. Green Citrus Nursery, in 1956, growing seedlings in his backyard. Through the years, he had several nursery sites until he purchased property along Highway 27 in Dundee where the nursery still resides. The business was incorporated in 1983 and the name was officially changed to W.E. Green and Sons Citrus Nursery, Inc., employing all three of his sons, Richard, Gary and Scott.
A farmer at heart, his hobbies included maintaining a 3 acre garden, growing vegetables and sharing the bounty with family, farm workers and friends. He also loved tractors, maintaining a collection of seven restored Farm All high clearance 140 tractors.
When he wasn't farming, Bill loved to spend time hunting and fishing. He was passionate about quail hunting and his Pointer dogs, which won the Georgia State Field Trials in 1983 and 1984. Bill said he wanted to be remembered as a hard worker. He was a wonderful, caring husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather and brother. He was loved by all who knew him and will be greatly missed.
Visitation will be Monday from 5 00 - 7 00 pm at Oak Ridge Funeral Care, Haines City with the funeral on Tuesday, May 6, 2014 at 10 am at the funeral home.
In lieu of flowers donations in the memory of William E. Green may be sent to University of Florida Foundation Citrus Research Education Center . Please reference IFAS-CREC-Apopka-001061.
Mail to University of Florida, PO Box 110170
Gainesville, FL 32064.
Condolences via www.oakridgefuneralcare.com
Published in Ledger from May 3 to May 5, 2014
Oak Ridge Funeral Care
1001 Grace Avenue Haines City, FL 33844