William Joseph Cantrell
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SPARTANBURG, SC-- William Joseph Cantrell "Bill," 80, of Spartanburg, died December 15, 2012, at the Spartanburg Regional Hospice Home. He was born August 30, 1932, on ancestral land in Boiling Springs, South Carolina. Mr. Cantrell was the son of the late William Jesse and Della Virginia Cudd Cantrell. Bill was the husband of Mary Frances Lee Cantrell. They were married on July 15, 1967 and celebrated their 45th wedding anniversary this past summer.
Mr. Cantrell was a 1950 graduate of Boiling Springs High School. He received his Associate of Arts degree from North Greenville College in 1952 and his Bachelor of Arts degree from Wofford College in 1954. He earned his Master's degree from Furman University in 1962 and continued post graduate work at the University of South Carolina, Spartanburg and the University of North Carolina, Greensboro. Mr. Cantrell was a retired Public School Educator from Spartanburg School District Seven. He served as a sixth grade teacher at Fremont Elementary School and Park Hills Elementary School, and a Gifted Education teacher at Pine Street Elementary School and an administrator at Edwin P. Todd Elementary School. He also served as Minister of Music and Organist at First Baptist Church of Boiling Springs for many years where he was also initially ordained as a deacon. He also attended First Baptist Church, Spartanburg where he served as a Sunday School teacher, deacon and member of the Music Committee. In recent years, Mr. Cantrell was a member of Morningside Baptist Church where he was an active member of the New Covenant of Joy Sunday School Class serving as class treasurer; the Golden Tones Senior Choir; and Chairman of the Church Library Committee. He was also a member of the Spartanburg Men's Garden Club, Woodmen of the World, School Masters, the National Education Association, the South Carolina Education Association, the Spartanburg Historical Society, the Spartanburg Regional Wellness Center, and the 50 Year Club of Wofford College. Mr. Cantrell was an avid gardener and especially enjoyed working with his prize winning roses. He was an accomplished artist who enjoyed both calligraphy and oil painting, displaying many of his paintings in his home. Bill received much joy from playing the piano and organ and teaching piano lessons to his grandchildren. Mr. Cantrell was an enthusiastic reader and enjoyed reading many different genres and attending book lectures. He was affectionately called both the "Gentle Giant" by his family and "Booie" by his grandchildren and their friends. He found pleasure in volunteering at River Ridge Elementary School where he and his wife were "Booie Claus and Frannie Claus" for Christmas festivities and where he helped first graders with their Spot of Pride Garden. Mr. Cantrell also enjoyed researching his family genealogy and sharing information about his ancestors with his loved ones. He cherished the years he served as an educator and maintained an interest in his former students and school colleagues and was delighted when he encountered them. Bill loved traveling with his wife, children, and grandchildren and especially treasured his family vacations to St. Simons Island, Georgia.
Surviving in addition to his wife Mary Frances, are his twin daughters, Christy Lee Cantrell Emerson and her husband, Forrest Kingsley Emerson III, of Moore, South Carolina and Amy Elizabeth Cantrell of Asheville, North Carolina; three grandchildren, Caroline Cantrell Emerson, William Kingsley Emerson, and John Forrest Emerson; two brothers, Robert Lee Cantrell, of Cleveland, Tennessee and James Hilliard Cantrell and his wife, Glenda Wilson Cantrell, of Boiling Springs; and many beloved cousins.
Visitation will be held at Morningside Baptist Church in the Welcome Center on Tuesday, December 18, 2012, from 4:00pm - 6:00pm. Funeral services will be held on Wednesday, December 19, 2012, at 3:00pm in the sanctuary at Morningside Baptist Church conducted by Dr. Kirk H. Neely and Rev. Robert C. Morgan. Burial will follow at Greenlawn Memorial Gardens. Pallbearers include Jerry Barnette, Christopher Cantrell, Tim Cantrell, Marc Combs, Donald Gibson, Joel Mills, Michael Morrison, Mike Morrison, Jack Powers, and Joe Sisson.
The family is at the home.
Memorials may be given to Morningside Baptist Church, 897 South Pine Street, Spartanburg, South Carolina, 29302; Wofford College, 429 North Church Street, Spartanburg, South Carolina, 29303; or to the
An online guest register is available at www.floydmortuary.com
Floyd's North Street Chapel
Published in Spartanburg Herald-Journal from Dec. 17 to Dec. 19, 2012