of Little Rock, AR
March 27, 1930 - March 21, 2023
Lt. Colonel Samuel Ernest Williamson, Jr., Retired, U.S. Army Reserve, age 92, died March 21, 2023. He was born on March 27, 1930 to Lily Viola (Hawthorne) and Samuel Ernest Williamson, Sr. He was a lifelong resident of Little Rock, Arkansas. He was known to many as either Sam or S.E.Sam is survived by his wife, Euva Cathern "Cathy" (Wolfe) Williamson of 25 years; his children Samuel E. Williamson, III (Marie) and Claibanne Williamson Chiechi (Vito Jr.); step-daughters Linda McMaster and Barbara Wilson (Mike), and step-son Brett Stuckey (Sue); grandchildren Dmitry Williamson (Breanna), Andy Williamson, Sasha Williamson, Giovanni Chiechi, Casey Turner (Sarah), Scott Crawford and Ryan Stuckey; 6 great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild on the way. He is also survived by many nieces and nephews and other loving family and friends. Sam is preceded in death by his parents, his first wife of 48 years Virginia Elizabeth Betty (McColey) Williamson, his brother B.A. Williamson, granddaughter Keri Turner Theiss, nieces Virginia Williamson Ricketts and Casey McColey. Born on East 16th Street in Little Rock, Sam was raised in the back of his father's shoe shop at 9th and Main Streets, where he learned the shoe repair business, sold newspapers, and learned to make men's hats at a neighboring business. He attended Little Rock Senior (Central) High and was married in 1948. He had many adventures in businesses throughout his long life to include owning his own shoe repair shop, school and office supply store, many pieces of real estate, and after retirement, he worked as a civilian for the Air National Guard at the Little Rock Airforce Base as a real property manager, and training others at bases all over the United States. A graduate of the United States Army Command and General Staff College, Lt. Col. Williamson served in the Arkansas Army National Guard for a total of 47 years having served in many roles such as the 125th Medical Battalion's Training Officer, Intelligence Officer, and full time Recruiter for approximately 25 years. In 1957, he was stationed at Little Rock Senior (Central) High School by President Eisenhower for active duty for an extended period of time. In 1948 at age 17, S.E. married his first wife, Betty. They were married 48 years until her death in 1996. Together, they raised a son and daughter whom he was so proud of; he always worked hard, and loved to travel all over. He was a member of Little Rock's First Baptist Church for more than 50 years, where he taught a men's Sunday School Class and later moved to teach the 2 1/2 year old class for more than 20 years. He also served as Chair of the Pulaski County Southern Baptist Missions Board with the vision to expand Southern Baptist Churches into West Little Rock in the late 1980's and early 1990's. His favorite Bible verse was John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life." Sam's hobbies throughout his life included his love and interest of cars, including owning his dream car, a Rolls Royce that he traveled to London to buy. Until recently, he was still driving his BMW Z4 convertible around town. He loved to travel everywhere and especially loved London. He also loved watching westerns, the Arkansas Razorbacks, and enjoying a good cup of coffee with his daughter. Sam was sweet and gentle and loved to tell stories of the past. Having lived such a long and interesting life, he could carry on a conversation about so many things. He was often found sitting with others and imparting great wisdom, and for the last 15 years, he especially enjoyed the guys at his son's bicycle shop. Sam/S.E. was always a loving and devoted husband, father, and family man who modeled Christian values, morals, and ethics to anyone he crossed paths with. He lived a long and happy life with family always by his side. Sam's legacy will carry on in what he taught his children, grandchildren, and many others. It was his following of Christ, his kindness and acts of love for others that will be seen in their hearts forever. Visitation will be Friday, March 24th from 6-8pm and services will be held Saturday, March 25, 2023 at Roller Chenal Funeral Home, 13801 Chenal Parkway, Little Rock, AR 72211. Interment will be at Roselawn Memorial Park in Little Rock.
I served with Sam in the HHD 125th Medical Battalion. Sam was a teacher with everyone willing to listen gaining great insight into the inner working of the medical battalion and how to be a good military soldier… You were a great blessing to me during that portion of my military career..
We were blessed by Mr. Williamson’s long life and good deeds. He was a kind and gentle man and such a good husband, father, grandfather, and great grandfather. Heaven has gained a beautiful angel. God bless his family and friends with comfort and peace.
What a lovely summary of a life well-lived! Claibanne and Sam, I am so sorry for the loss of your sweet Daddy. You were blessed to have him for so long. I know that void can never be filled, but I pray for your peace. Love, Crystal
Mr. Williamson was such a sweet man, and I will miss him so much at our family gatherings! He had a great sense of humor, and a kind way about him. I still remember our family trips to the beach with the Williamson family, and I will always have fond memories of him and Ms. Betty from when I was young. I've so enjoyed having him and Ms. Kathy at our family gatherings over the years as they are the last of that generation in our family, and they have always been there with bells on, even as it was getting more difficult to get around in older age.I know how close Mr. Williamson was with his family, so my endure the sad task of saying goodbye to someone who is so close to your heart.