James Davies Williams Jr.

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LANEXA-James Davies Williams, Jr. passed away peacefully on July 6, 2014 at the home of his daughter in Lanexa, Virginia. He lived in Washington, D.C. and Bethesda, Maryland for over 40 years, and later resided in St. Petersburg, Florida and the Williamsburg, Virginia area. The son of James and Anna Williams, he was born and raised in Portsmouth, Ohio, where he attended Portsmouth High School and was an Eagle Scout. Mr. Williams attended Princeton University, where he lettered in crew and graduated magna cum laude in 1943 with a degree in economics. Upon graduation, he attended Officer Candidate School and served in the U.S. Navy as an officer aboard the destroyer U.S.S. Meade. He participated in the invasion at Tarawa and earned six major engagement stars in the Asiatic–Pacific theater. After the war, he continued to serve in the U.S. Navy Reserve, and retired with the rank of Commander.

After graduating from Yale Law School in 1949, Mr. Williams served for four years as Legislative Counsel to Senator Robert A. Taft of Ohio. In 1954, he was appointed by President Eisenhower to the Commission on Application of Federal Laws to the Virgin Islands. For over 40 years, he practiced international trade, legislative and administrative law in Washington, D.C. During that time, he pursued matters before the U.S. Tariff Commission, the U.S. International Trade Commission and the Court of International Trade, and shepherded numerous legislative matters through Congress. Mr. Williams was instrumental in helping to secure the site for the United States Marine Corps War Memorial, and was an active participant in the Kennedy and Tokyo Rounds of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade. In 1969-70, he founded the law firm of Williams & King, and Willking International, an economic consulting firm. In 1971, he was made a Chevalier de l'Ordre Nationale du Merite by the President of France for services to New Caledonia in connection with international trade matters.

From 1981 to 1987, Mr. Williams was a member of the Board and Chairman of the Finance Committee of the Army and Navy Club in Washington, D.C. Throughout his life, he continued to actively support his alma mater as an alumnus, serving a term as president of the Princeton Class of 1943. A Freemason, he was a member of Aurora Lodge No. 48 F&AM in Portsmouth, Ohio, and was a member of the Chevy Chase Presbyterian Church, where he served as a deacon. Mr. Williams was an avid fly-fisherman, enjoyed collecting books and reading, and was a devoted father.

Survivors include four children, James D. Williams III of Troy, Michigan, John M. Williams of Marietta, Georgia, David E. Williams II of Chester, Connecticut, and Nancy Love Williams of Lanexa, Virginia, and three grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held at Arlington National Cemetery.

Published in The Daily Times from July 17 to July 18, 2014
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