×

Nelsen Funeral Home & Crematory - Reid Chapel

412 S. Washington Hwy., Ashland, VA

OBITUARY

William E. "Bill" Winfrey, Jr.

June 10, 1933September 28, 2019
Play Tribute Movie

William Elisha Winfrey, Jr. “Bill,” 86, of Mechanicsville, VA went home to live with our Lord on September 28, 2019. He is survived by his wife of 58 years, Addie; his children David (Pam) and their sons Christopher and Carter; Annette (Scott) and their son John, and Max (Carolina) and their daughters Brooke, Camila, and Hailee. Bill was a faithful Christ-follower, a prayer warrior, a dedicated family man, an active Gideon, and a true servant leader who impacted many lives. He was a U.S. Army Veteran and a graduate of Virginia Tech. A Licensed Professional Engineer, Bill retired from VDOT as the Director of the Materials Division, culminating a fulfilling career of over 33 years. The family will receive friends on Tuesday, October 1, from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. at Nelsen Funeral Home, 412 S. Washington Hwy, Ashland, VA 23005. A memorial service will be held on Wednesday, October 2, at 11 a.m. at Northside Baptist Church, 7600 Studley Road, Mechanicsville, VA 23116. Interment will be private. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The Gideons International, P. O. Box 193, Mechanicsville, VA 23111.

Services

  • Visitation Tuesday, October 1, 2019
  • Memorial Service Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Memories

William E. "Bill" Winfrey, Jr.

have a memory or condolence to add?

ADD A MEMORY
David Winfrey

October 8, 2019

Message on Facebook, September 28, 2019:
My dad passed away this afternoon. He was one of the finest men I've ever known. I learned a lot from him. I'm sure the first words he heard this evening were "well done, good and faithful servant." A true man of God who loved God and others. Dad...we will miss you but we will be reunited again in Paradise.

Carolina Winfrey

October 8, 2019

Message on Facebook, September 28, 2019:
With a heavy heart I announce that our beloved Bill Winfrey, Max's dad, passed away today at 4:45 p.m. He was a man of God. He was a man of good character and integrity. A man whose life is an example to us of unconditional love and sacrifice for others. I can see him with his contagious laughter, walking towards his Savior and hearing "well done, my faithful servant." I love you Grandpa Bill, and I will see you in Heaven.

Annette Edwards

October 8, 2019

Message on Facebook, September 28, 2019:
Today we said good-bye to my father, Bill Winfrey. He was a committed Christ-follower who lived his faith by serving others and being a friend to all he met. He was a Gideon ministering in jails, youth detention centers, and to college students. He was an Army Veteran. He retired from the Virginia Highway Department as the Director of the Materials Division where he took particular delight in mentoring new engineers. He helped procure land for several churches to build in Hanover County. He built a dam and designed a 5-acre lake on their property. He researched and documented numerous old cemeteries in Hanover County. He loved tree farming, wood-working, and gardening. He will be missed by many whose lives he touched and helped in time of need. God was so gracious to allow Mom, David, Pam, and me to be with Dad when he passed. Max, Carolina, Scott, Brooke, Camila, Christopher, Hailee, Carter, and John all got to say good-bye within the last 24 hours, most again within the last half-hour of his life. God's timing is perfect -- always.

Scott Edwards

October 8, 2019

Message on Facebook, October 1, 2019:
My Father-in-law, William (Bill) Winfrey will be laid to rest tomorrow. He was a good man and a friend. A harder working man would be hard to find. A man that cared about the less fortunate. A man that believed in the forgiveness of others and giving others a second chance. He held himself to high standards that most men would not be able to achieve. He would not like me to talk about him but instead of the salvation that comes from knowing Jesus Christ. For those fortunate enough to have known Bill they would have known Jesus. Not just by what he said but what he did.

Max Winfrey

October 8, 2019

Message on Facebook, September 28, 2019:
Hi friends, we said goodbye to my father today. He lived an exemplary life and we are proud of his example and all he did to help others while he was here. As we reflect on his life, we see evidence of God's blessings and Dad's eagerness to serve Him. He would want you to have that same relationship with Jesus Christ. When you have Jesus, you have peace.

Reta Kennon

October 7, 2019

Loved Bill Winfrey & family
Thank God for your investment in lost souls in Hanover & surrounding counties. Your rewards will be great in eternity!!

FROM THE FAMILY

William E. "Bill" Winfrey

June 10, 1933 - September 28, 2019

FROM THE FAMILY

Bill's family raised chickens in the early years.

FROM THE FAMILY

Bill riding Ladybug in the yard of his home on Staples Mill Road

FROM THE FAMILY

Bill with his parents -- William E. Winfrey, Sr., and Anne Jones Winfrey -- at home on Staples Mill Road in Richmond, Virginia

FROM THE FAMILY

William E. "Bill" Winfrey

June 10, 1933 - September 28, 2019

FROM THE FAMILY

Bill's family raised chickens in the early years.

FROM THE FAMILY

Bill riding Ladybug in the yard of his home on Staples Mill Road

FROM THE FAMILY

Bill with his parents -- William E. Winfrey, Sr., and Anne Jones Winfrey -- at home on Staples Mill Road in Richmond, Virginia

FROM THE FAMILY

Graduation picture, Glen Allen High School in 1951

FROM THE FAMILY

At home on leave while serving in the U.S. Army

FROM THE FAMILY

Bill with his mother, Anne Winfrey

FROM THE FAMILY

Bill on leave during service with the U.S. Army

FROM THE FAMILY

Bill trained at Camp Rucker, Alabama, in a heavy weapons company in the U.S. Army.

FROM THE FAMILY

Graduation picture from Virginia Polytechnic Institute (now Virginia Tech) in 1958

Biography

William Elisha ("Bill") Winfrey, Jr., 86, went home to be with our Lord on September 28, 2019. He was born on June 10, 1933, in Richmond, VA, to parents William Elisha Winfrey, Sr., and Anne Lillian Jones Winfrey. Bill grew up on Staples Mill Road, raising chickens and cattle, and cutting grass to earn spending money. He graduated from Glen Allen High School where he ran track and also developed a life-long love of playing horseshoes. Drafted into the U.S. Army, Bill was assigned to a heavy weapons company at Camp Rucker, Alabama and Fort Benning, Georgia. He was discharged as the Korean Conflict ended. Bill then began his college career in earnest and graduated with a degree in Civil Engineering from V.P.I. (Virginia Tech) and entered the Engineer Training Program with the Virginia Department of Transportation. That was about the time he met Addie Nell Price, who became his wife soon after they met.

During his 33-year Highway Department career, he took particular delight in mentoring new engineers. A Licensed Professional Engineer, Bill was respected for upholding high standards and ensuring resources were available to do the job correctly. He retired after attaining his dream job: the Director of the Materials Division, where he put several junior engineers on paths for career promotions and made improvements which significantly elevated safety and efficiency. His training as a Civil Engineer came in handy early on as he designed and drew the plans for their home on Studley Road in Mechanicsville, VA, and eventually the two-story shed he built there.

Throughout his career, Bill was busy with Addie raising their three children, serving as Deacon and teaching at local churches, gardening and raising fruit trees, doing home projects such as laying sidewalks and brick patios, building fences, and pine tree farming. Bill and Addie took a mission trip with a team from Cool Spring Baptist Church to Cali, Colombia, where they built onto a church to accommodate a Christian school. Bill helped procure land for Hanover County churches while he served with the Dover Baptist Association.

Retirement was a very busy stage of life. In 1994, Bill designed and built a dam on land in Beaverdam that had been in his family for several generations. With the help of neighbor Laurel Miller and life-long friend George Condyles, he did extensive heavy equipment site preparation and eventually flooded 5 acres for a pond. In 1996, Bill and Addie built a home on the property and relocated from their Studley Road home. Bill thoroughly enjoyed living in the country, where he fished, worked a large garden, and delighted in watching the deer, turkeys, ducks, occasional geese, and the rare bears that traversed the property. He and close friend Richard Henshaw helped a lot of country neighbors in need. Charter members of Beaverdam Baptist Church, Bill and Addie gifted the land to build the church, and Bill oversaw the construction.

Bill was a Gideon for over 50 years, holding several state and local leadership positions, and speaking about the Gideon ministry in many Richmond area churches. He distributed thousands of Bibles and Testaments around the Richmond area, and thousands of Christian tracts in the Richmond and Hanover County areas. For 25 years, he taught a weekly Bible study at the Hanover Learning Center for delinquent boys.

Bill researched, located, and documented over 500 cemeteries in Hanover County and published a couple of reference books for the local library. This achievement earned him the Patrick Henry Leadership Award from the Hanover County Historical Society in 2013.

Ever a busy man, Bill did make time to enjoy family. In addition to traveling to Mississippi to visit Addie's extended family, there was a memorable road trip throughout the New England states, numerous family bike rides, hitting and fielding softballs, target shooting, camping trips in the pickup, water skiing on Lake Anna, and fishing in the Chesapeake Bay. Bill built a wooden Jon boat which was used for a lot of fishing trips; later in life he enjoyed woodworking and made some furniture, toy boxes, display cases, and boards for mounting numerous arrowheads he'd found. He took a trip to the Holy Land, and he and Addie enjoyed a vacation in beautiful Wyoming. Bill also looked forward to watching Virginia Tech football games and Duke University basketball games.

Bill was a faithful son in caring for his aging widowed mother and her home and personal affairs. After she moved into the nursing home, he drove a half hour to visit her every other day, feeding her, singing and reading the Bible to her, until she died several years later.

He wrote his autobiography. After running out of copies, he revised it and published a second book, entitled Unexpected Blessings: Life Lessons I've Learned Throughout an Eventful Journey. He delighted in distributing them to family and friends.


OBITUARY

William Elisha Winfrey, Jr. “Bill,” 86, of Mechanicsville, VA went home to live with our Lord on September 28, 2019. He is survived by his wife of 58 years, Addie; his children David (Pam) and their sons Christopher and Carter; Annette (Scott) and their son John, and Max (Carolina) and their daughters Brooke, Camila, and Hailee. Bill was a faithful Christ-follower, a prayer warrior, a dedicated family man, an active Gideon, and a true servant leader who impacted many lives. He was a U.S. Army Veteran and a graduate of Virginia Tech. A Licensed Professional Engineer, Bill retired from VDOT as the Director of the Materials Division, culminating a fulfilling career of over 33 years. The family will receive friends on Tuesday, October 1, from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. at Nelsen Funeral Home, 412 S. Washington Hwy, Ashland, VA 23005. A memorial service will be held on Wednesday, October 2, at 11 a.m. at Northside Baptist Church, 7600 Studley Road, Mechanicsville, VA 23116. Interment will be private. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The Gideons International, P. O. Box 193, Mechanicsville, VA 23111.