William Lee Barber, 81, of the Bethany Community, was called to Heaven in the early hours of Thursday, January 14, 2021. He was born July 31, 1939. Mr. Barber lived all his life in Decatur County. He wasn’t one to travel unless it was to “ride around the block” or ride to town for a haircut. He was an ole timey southerner and didn’t much care for the fast pace of the 21st century. He was a simple man, a simple farmer, and he enjoyed the country and old ways of doing things.
Mr. Barber worked for 28 years for Bainbridge State Hospital and happily retired in 2002. William was a Mason with Orion Lodge No. 8 and previously served as the Worshipful Master and most recently as Chaplain. He was a Shriner with Hasan Temple and Bainbridge Shrine Club. He was a member of both organizations for nearly 46 years. He was a member of Bethany Baptist Church.
Mr. Barber loved to hunt and fish. Listening to hunting dogs run deer on a cold winter morning gave him some of his happiest times. He was a lover of old southern gospel music and is probably singing in a heavenly quartet somewhere in Heaven.
In 1968 Mr. Barber married Virgie Bryant of Chattahoochee, Florida. They have two children, Sheri B. Allen and her husband, Bill, of Bainbridge and Hilton Barber and his wife, Allison, of Tampa, FL.
Mr. Barber was from a big family. He was preceded in death by his parents, Vada & Bennett Barber; and his siblings, Mildred Sapp, Leonard Barber, Adell Tharp, Sarah Bellflower, Evans Barber, Nell Nix, Jane Spooner, Irene Spooner, and Nelson Barber. In addition to many nieces and nephews, and his immediate family, Mr. Barber’s sister, Juanita Talbert (formerly of Bainbridge now living in Virginia), is his only living sibling.
The graveside funeral service will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, January 16, 2021 at Bethany Baptist Church Cemetery with Rev. Roy Matthews and Rev. Jamie McMillan officiating. Men of Bethany Baptist Church and members of Orion Lodge No. 8 will serve as pallbearers. Due to the ongoing concerns regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, those attending are asked to maintain the recommended safe social distancing of six feet and/or wear protective masks in accordance with the State of Georgia guidelines.
Online visitors may sign the guest register at www.iveyfuneral.com. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Bethany Baptist Church Cemetery Fund, PO Box 672, Bainbridge, GA 39818 or Shriners Hospitals for Children, Processing Center, PO Box 863765, Orlando, FL 32886.