Willie L. “Bill” May, Jr., age 94, passed away peacefully on January 13, 2015 in Nashville, TN. He is survived by his daughter, Margy (Tom) M. Hagood, Nashville, TN; son, Willie (Grace) L. “Billy” May, III, Sylva, NC; and three grandchildren, Sarah Hagood, Nashville; Marshall and Gracie May, Sylva. He was preceded in death by his wife, Margaret; parents, Willie L. and Maggie May; and brother, Irwin.
Bill was born December 18, 1920 in Rockingham, NC. After graduating from Rockingham High School, he worked for Carolina Power and Light Co. in Rockingham for several years. He attended North Carolina State University for two years before joining the U.S. Army in 1944 where he was stationed in Italy until 1946. In August 1947, he married Margaret E. Liles. He returned to NC State and graduated with an Engineering degree in 1948 while Margaret worked in the registrar’s office. For the next 39 years, he was employed with Union Carbide Inc. in the International Division and traveled all over the world overseeing construction and start up of battery plants. For many years, he and his family lived in Brazil, Singapore, Mexico, Argentina and the Philippines, before returning to Cleveland, Ohio in 1977. Bill continued to travel the globe while Margaret, Margy and Billy remained in Cleveland, OH. Upon retirement in 1987, Bill and Margaret moved back to their home state and settled in Southern Pines, NC.
Bill was never one to sit idle for too long, he joined Carbide retirees, Kiwanis, played golf, volunteered at Weymouth Gardens, enjoyed his condo at the beach and continued to travel abroad. Bill and Margaret were members of the United Methodist Church in Southern Pines, NC and both were active members until her death in October 2003 and Bill moved to Nashville, TN in 2011.
Margy and Billy extend their sincere appreciation to Bill’s longtime caregivers, Margaret Sirleaf and Ayla Dumont, for their loving care and companionship with Bill over the past several years. And to Dr. Bruce Richards, Internal and Geriatric Medicine, Nashville, for his attentive care.
A memorial service will be held later this Spring at the United Methodist Church in Southern Pines. Memorials may be made to the United Methodist Church of Southern Pines, 175 Midland Rd., Southern Pines, NC 28387.