William Ceasor Rodriguez, 82, Bells, Tenn., beloved husband, father and grandfather, fell softly into God's waiting arms on Monday morning. As the blinds were opened and the sun shone in, he quietly closed his eyes and breathed his last soft breath. His Parkinson's disease will be no more as his new body will be perfect.
"Mr. Bill," as he was lovingly called by his many friends, was born in Philadelphia, son of the late Guillermo Rodriguez-Bacardi of Havana, Cuba, and Ruby (Meyers) Rodriguez of Frankstown.
Bill and his wife, Madeline (Brown), celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary this year with their children, grandchildren and faithful friends. They have four wonderful sons: William III (Karleen), Randall (Beth), Bret (Lisa) and Brooke (Suzanne); and 10 very special grandchildren: Christina, William, Daniel, Amanda, Rachel, Alexander, Nathaniel, Isabel, Brooke and Colin.
He also leaves to cherish his memory a sister, Carmen (Raul) Cowley of Miami, Fla.; and a brother, Robert (Elaine) in Colorado. His faithful caregivers, Cindy Roe and Deborah Evans, were always there for him and will miss him dearly. Also missing Bill is his best friend, Ken Martin, who brought and made his own coffee to drink while the two discussed football games and the world's problems.
He was preceded in death by a brother, Daniel.
Bill graduated from Hollidaysburg High School in 1948 and served three years in the U.S. Army during the Korean War before marrying Madeline Brown of Duncansville on July 18, 1953. He later graduated from Penn State University and took a position at Buckeye Cellulose in Memphis, Tenn., where he worked 31 years until his retirement. He was a member of Underwood United Methodist Church in Memphis, where he served as a scoutmaster and built the baptismal.
After retirement, Bill resided in Bells, Tenn., where he became a member of Forest Heights United Methodist Church in Jackson. He lived out his life playing competitive tennis and took up the craft of building and flying model airplanes. He enjoyed teaching others how to build the planes, even though his hands were crippled with Parkinson's.
He was a mentor to many people and never had a cross word to say. He loved his family with all his heart, and there is not a container large enough to hold the tears we have shed for him and to fill the emptiness we feel.
Friends will be received from noon until the 1 p.m. funeral service Friday, Sept. 27, 2013, at Memorial Park Funeral Home, Memphis, Tenn. Burial will follow in Memorial Park Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105, in memory of William C. Rodriguez.