ECRU – Willie Lee Friday, 86, died Saturday, Dec. 28, 2013, at the Mississippi Veterans Home in Oxford after a brief stay there. He was born July 5, 1927, in Tremont to Roscoe Chester Friday and Ona Clyde Hopkins Friday. He was raised on a farm in Tremont. He first attended school in Providence in a one-room school house where his father was the teacher. He was a 1944 graduate of Tremont High School. He received his college degrees from Mississippi State University and Louisiana State University. He proudly served in the Pacific in World War II in the Army tank destroyers unit.
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For a few years, he taught school at Tremont High School and Itawamba Junior College. He then worked for 31 years as the president of the Bank of Mississippi in Ecru. After retiring from the bank he became a rural mail carrier in Ecru for another 13 years. He loved gospel music, fishing, gardening, stock car racing, Mississippi State sports and St. Louis Cardinals baseball. He was a member of Ecru Baptist Church.
Services will be held at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 1, at United Funeral Service Chapel with the Rev. Barry Littlefield officiating. Burial will be in Ecru City Cemetery. United Funeral Service in New Albany is in charge of the arrangements.
He is survived by his wife of 63 years, Mary Gurley Friday; his son, Alan Friday; his daughter, Ann Friday Howell (Jerry); a grandson, Brock Howell; a granddaughter, Karen Howell; two sisters-in-law, Martha Graham and Doris Friday; two brothers-in-law, Robert Loden and Travis Bennett; and numerous nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers, Gatman Friday and Cecil Friday; and a sister, Doris Friday Shafer.
Pallbearers will be the active deacons of Ecru Baptist Church.
Visitation will be from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Wednesday at the funeral home.
In honor of Mr. Friday, United Funeral Service Inc. will fly the flag of the U.S. Army at the funeral home during visitation and service.
For online condolences visit unitedfuneralservice.com.
Published in Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal on Dec. 31, 2013