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David Percy Williams III

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David Percy Williams III

of Boca Grande, Florida and Walloon Lake, Michigan died at home in Boca Grande on Monday April 14, 2014.

David was born in New York City on November 24, 1933. He was the son of David P. Williams, Jr., of Indianapolis, Indiana and Virginia Crane Williams of Pasadena, California. David was the great grandson of Lyman S. Ayres, founder of the L. S. Ayres Department Stores and the great, great grandson of Robert McCormack of Rockbridge County, Virginia, known for inventing the McCormack Reaper.

David is survived by his wife Camille Slay Williams of Boca Grande, his daughter, Lori Williams of Falls Church, Virginia and his son, David P. Williams IV of Portland, Oregon, and three grandchildren, David P. Williams V, Anna Rowe Williams and Claiborne Matthew Williams. He is also survived by his cousin, Cotton (Will) Hanley of Boca Grande, 3 sisters in law, Patricia (Gary) Robinson, Leonora (John) Long and Laura Slay, David was predeceased by his parents, his first wife Karen Froseth Williams, the mother of his 2 children and his sister Katherine Williams Coxey.

David's youth was mainly spent in Indianapolis where he attended The Park School. He then went on to attend Williams College, and to graduate from Pomona College with a degree in Government. He subsequently received his MBA in Marketing from Indiana University Kelley School of Business. In addition, David served his country in the U.S. Army Reserves for 11 years.

In 1966 David joined the family business and was appointed Manager of the L. S. Ayres Glenbrook Store in Ft. Wayne, Indiana. David returned to Indianapolis in 1968 to become Vice President and General Manager of Home Furnishings, L.S. Ayres & Company. 1975 took David and family to St. Petersburg Florida where David was President and CEO of Robinson's of Florida Department Stores. In 1978 David returned to his beloved hometown of Indianapolis to become President and CEO of L. S. Ayres & Company. Following this 5-year post, David became President and then Chairman of Caldor, Inc. His retail journey culminated when he became President of Associated Dry Goods in New York in 1984. David's favorite moments were spent "on the floor" mixing with his employees and customers.

Wherever David lived he felt strongly about giving back to his community and he served on various boards throughout his life. He served as President of the Indianapolis Public Television Station WFYI, Director of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra Board, Director of the Indianapolis Corporate Community Council, Director Merchants National Bank & Trust, Director Indianapolis Convention and Visitors Bureau, Director Ft. Wayne Symphony Orchestra.

David became a permanent resident of Boca Grande when he retired in 1986 and spent many wonderful summers on Walloon Lake. He enjoyed a life surrounded by wonderful friends and family. He will be remembered for his devotion to his family, his friends and his dogs, his love of music, his passion for sports.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to The Boca Grande Health Clinic, P.O. Box 2340 and The Island School, P.O. Box 1090, Boca Grande, FL 33921.

Lemon Bay Funeral Home and Cremation Services of Englewood, Florida is in charge of arrangements.

Published in the The Indianapolis Star on May 3, 2014
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