Bill Purdie Jr.
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Family-Placed Death Notice

PURDIE, Bill, Jr. BILL PURDIE, JR. William "Bill" James Purdie, Jr. passed away at his home in Milton, GA on July 22, 2010. Bill Purdie, former Master Mechanic - Steam Engines for Southern Railway, and later Norfolk Southern Railway, had a career which afforded him the opportunity to bring smiles to thousands of people, both young and old. Purdie began his 47 year career with Southern Railway in February 1936, as a machinist's helper in Pegram Shops in Atlanta; he then served as machinist's apprentice and later roundhouse foreman. Purdie preferred the shop to the road stating "The shop restores; the road debilitates." His theory being that "The exhaust, smoke, whistling, bright headlight, and flailing rods of a photo run-by were glamorous; but the lathe, forge, drop pit, rivet furnace, crane, and hammer made the dramatics possible." A strong belief and deep conviction in Jesus as our Lord and Savior, led Purdie to be actively involved in the East Point Presbyterian Church for many years. He was Building Committee Chairman during the church's expansion and served in several other capacities through the years. Purdie belonged to several organizations, including the Atlanta Chapter, National Railway Historical Society (NRHS) (Charter and 50 year member), Southeastern Railway Museum, Southern Railway Historical Society, American Legion Post 51, National Rifle Association, National Model Railroad Association, and was a Kentucky Colonel. Bill Purdie was married to the former Sara Elizabeth Fries of East Point for 52 years until her death in 1993. He is also preceded in death by his parents William James Purdie, Sr. and Charlotte Taylor Purdie, both from Scotland; son John Davis Purdie; brothers Douglas, Alexander, and Kenneth; sisters, Hazel Purdie and Charlotte Boggus. He is survived by sons William James Purdie, III and wife Ruby of Milton, Georgia, and Donald Kenneth Purdie and wife Sharon of Wise, Virginia; grandchildren Deanna Purdie, Dr. Brian Purdie, Matthew Purdie, and Jeff Roark; and one great grandchild, Juliet Rose Purdie, as well as several nieces and nephews. He also leaves behind a very dear and close friend, Joyce Harris of Atlanta. Family will receive friends at Northside Chapel, 12050 Crabapple Road, Roswell, Georgia, Between 4:00 and 7:00 p.m., Saturday July 24. Funeral services, officiated by Dr. Allan Purdie, will be held Sunday July 25 at East Point Presbyterian Church at 2:00 p.m., followed by graveside services and interment at Hillcrest Cemetery. Family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Southeastern Railway Museum, Duluth, Georgia.

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Jul. 24, 2010.
No memorial events are currently scheduled. To offer your sympathy during this difficult time, you can now have memorial trees planted in a National Forest in memory of your loved one.
Memories & Condolences
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7 entries
September 27, 2010
Sharon and Donald; David and I were saddened to hear about the death of Papa. It goes without saying what a wonderful man he was. I loved the times he and I spent together and how we shared our love for God. He was a great teacher of life.
Susan Rolfs
July 26, 2010
It goes without saying that in addition to being a great man, Bill Purdie was an important leader in the effort to preserve the history of American railroads.

All those who remember the Southern Railway steam excursion program, have ever visited the Southeastern Railway Museum, or simply care about railroad history, are forever in his debt.

Thank you, Bill!

Jackson McQuigg, VP of Properties
Atlanta History Center
July 25, 2010
Bill and Ruby, Jan and I were saddened to see the notice of your Dad's passing. You are in our thoughts and prayers. Having grown up in a railroad family (Seaboard) I understand his love for the railroad. The memories of this love will always be cherished. God bless you and your family.
Milton and Jan Gorman
July 24, 2010
We offer our deepest sympathy to the family of Bill Purdie. We will cherish our memories of Bill and he will be remembered fondly.
Mike and Kathy Devaney
Kathy Devaney
July 24, 2010
O - O O , May God Bless Bill, for his kindness to a many of poor young boy, who fell in love his steam ladies and him. He Served the South well.
Ward Sutton
July 24, 2010
The world of passenger railway has lost one of its most erstwhile advocates. May his memory be for a blessing to all who knew him and especially his family.
Alan Yorker, President Emeritus
National Association of Railroad Passengers
July 24, 2010
Offering our deepest condolences during this difficult time.
Staff of Northside Chapel Funeral Directors, Inc.
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