OBITUARY

William "Coach Ward" Burton Ward Sr.

June 9, 1930July 25, 2018
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Ward considers his life’s career in athletics as his greatest achievement because through it he enjoyed the relationships with other coaches and players. He feels he might have helped many of his players to be more productive citizens. Coach Ward continued to have a special relationship with his former players who called, wrote or visited him often. Coach Ward was a member of the First United Methodist Church, the Upper Room Sunday School Class and served on the Pastor-Parrish Relations Committee. He helped organize the first Upward Basketball Program in Booneville, served on the Board of Directors for Booneville Golf and Country Club and the Booneville Boys and Girls Club. In 2007 he was named the Outstanding Citizen by the Booneville Junior Auxillary. He was a 32nd degree Mason, a Shriner and chairman of the committee formed to gain approval for and erect a monument in memory of the soldiers of Booneville’s Dixie Division of the National Guard.

He is survived by three children, Jimmie Ellen “Gigi” Ward Brumley and her husband Charles, Bill Ward, Jr. and his wife Paula, and John Andy Ward and his wife Rebecca. Seven grandchildren, Ashley Catherine Brumley Bennett and her husband Bo, Emily Ward Johnson and her husband Brian, Patrick Brumley and his wife Savannah, Trey Ward and his wife Leslie, Trent Ward, Anna Kathryn Ward and Jay Ward. Eight great-grandchildren, Ward Johnson, Cailyn Johnson, Mary Ellis Johnson, Catherine Brooks Bennett, Caroline Bennett, Landry Rose Ward, Anne Braxton Ward and Mary Charles Brumley.

He was preceded in death by his parents, wife of 58 years, Mary Anne Gullett Ward, one brother Milton Ward and one sister, Willie Jean Ward.

Pallbearers: Patrick Brumley, Trey Ward, Trent Ward, Jay Ward, Brian Johnson, Ward Johnson. Honorary pallbearers will be the Tiger Den Coffee Club members.

  • FAMILY

  • Jimmie Ellen "Gigi" (Charles) Brumley, Daughter
  • Bill (Paula) Ward Jr., Son
  • John Andy (Rebecca) Ward, Son
  • Ashley Catherine (Bo) Bennett, Grandchild
  • Emily (Brian) Johnson, Grandchild
  • Patrick (Savannah) Brumley, Grandchild
  • Trey (Leslie) Ward, Grandchild
  • Trent Ward, Grandchild
  • Anna Kathryn Ward, Grandchild
  • Jay Ward, Grandchild
  • Ward Johnson, Great Grandchild
  • Cailyn Johnson, Great Grandchild
  • Mary Ellis Johnson, Great Grandchild
  • Catherine Brooks Bennett, Great Grandchild
  • Caroline Bennett, Great Grandchild
  • Landry Rose Ward, Great Grandchild
  • Anne Braxton, Great Grandchild
  • Mary Charles Brumley, Great Grandchild
  • Luther Ward, Father
  • Dicie Catherine McGee Ward, Mother
  • Mary Ann Ward (Married 58 Years), Wife
  • Milton Ward, Brother
  • Willie Jean Ward, Sister
  • PALLBEARERS

  • Patrick Brumley
  • Trey Ward
  • Trent Ward
  • Jay Ward
  • Brian Johnson
  • Ward Johnson
  • Bo Bennett
  • Tiger Den Coffee Club Members, Honorary Pallbearers

Services

  • Visitation Friday, July 27, 2018
  • A Celebration of Life Saturday, July 28, 2018
REMEMBERING

William "Coach Ward" Burton Ward Sr.

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Judy Brewer

July 31, 2018

Booneville will never be the same without Coach Ward. He was a kind and loving person, who always greeted me with a smile. My brother, Kent, thought the world of him. My prayers will be with his family. Love you, Coach Ward. Judy Brewer

Robert " Bob" Stutts

July 28, 2018

Coach Billy Ward, Thank you for all the time's you have been there for me and my family! Especially during the hard times. You always treated me like I was one of yours.The first time I got to walk with you and my Daddy,on to a football field I new that it was something I would cherish the rest of my life literally! You have been a great uncle to me my whole life and will continue to through your family that means so much to me and my family! Thank you again for letting me tag along with you when I know you had more important things going on.I will always remember riding on that Northeast football and basketball bus to all the games and said I was a Northeast Tiger forever!!We will miss you and so much more!!!! Bob.

George Houston

July 27, 2018

Coach Ward, my mentor & friend. His countless contributions to my life, son & grandsons have come from the countless lessons taught me on the football practice fields. Memories of Tombigbee Conference football games, West Side Swimming Pool duties & loafing at the Ward house with Mary Ann feeding a bunch of snacking football players are etched in my mind & heart. Coach, I hope I can make your lineup in Heaven but sitting on your bench waiting for action is sufficient as long as I have you backing me up. Love you, Coach Ward.

FROM THE FAMILY
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Biography

William Burton “Coach Bill” Ward, Sr., passed away on Wednesday, July 25, 2018 surrounded by his family at his home. He was born on June 9, 1930 to Luther and Dicie Catherine Ward. He was a 1949 graduate of Booneville High School where he was a member of the 1949 BHS Championship basketball team, BHS baseball team and was Captain of the 1948 BHS undefeated football team, 1st in history. After high school he attended Northeast MS Community College, and was a member of the first football team for the Tigers and played two seasons. He was then inducted in the United States Army during the Korean War. He went on to the University of Southern Mississippi and played football on a scholarship in 1952-1953. He received a master’s degree from the University of MS. In 1954 he began a coaching career as head coach at Booneville High School and led the Blue Devils to seven winning seasons. He was then hired as head coach at W.P. Daniel High School in New Albany in 1961 leading the Bulldogs to two undefeated seasons with a 23 game winning streak being named Little Ten Conference Coach of the Year in 1962 and 1963.He was also a Member of the North coaching staff for the 1964 Mississippi High School All-Star Game in Jackson, MS. He was hired as head coach at Houston High School in 1967. In 1968 he became head coach and charged with the reinstatement of the football program at Northeast Mississippi Junior College, and named Athletic Director in 1973 where he then led the Tigers to North Division titles and State runner-up finishes in 1979 and 1980. He was named to North Mississippi Junior College Coach of the Year in 1980; leading the Tigers to a 9-0 start and as high as second in the national rankings in 1980. He retired from coaching following the 1982 season with an overall record of 152-123-9. He served as NJCAA Region 23 Director in 1987 for 13 years; and also served two terms on the executive committee of the NJCAA. In 1987 he was elected president of the Mississippi Community College Athletic Directors Association in which he served for 10 years. Coach Ward was responsible for bringing the Mississippi Community/Junior College All Star Classic football game to Northeast in 1987. He was inducted into the Mississippi High School Coaches Hall of Fame in 1988, awarded the Men’s Outstanding Leadership Award by the NJCAA in 1994, receiving the NJCAA Loyalty Award in 1995. In 1996 he was inducted into the National Coaches Hall of Fame; and honored by the All-American Football Foundation as Outstanding Community College Coach in 2004, the same year Coach Billy Ward Drive was named. In 2007 he was inducted into the Mississippi Community and Junior College Sports Hall of Fame and in 2008 inducted into the NEMCC Sports Hall of Fame as a member of the first class of initiates. He was inducted into the Northeast Mississippi Football Coaches Association in 2018.
Ward considers his life’s career in athletics as his greatest achievement because through it he enjoyed the relationships with other coaches and players. He feels he might have helped many of his players to be more productive citizens. Coach Ward continued to have a special relationship with his former players who called, wrote or visited him often.
Coach Ward was a member of the First United Methodist Church, the Upper Room Sunday School Class and served on the Pastor-Parrish Relations Committee. He helped organize the first Upward Basketball Program in Booneville, served on the Board of Directors for Booneville Golf and Country Club and the Booneville Boys and Girls Club. In 2007 he was named the Outstanding Citizen by the Booneville Junior Auxillary. He was a 32nd degree Mason, a Shriner and chairman of the committee formed to gain approval for and erect a monument in memory of the soldiers of Booneville’s Dixie Division of the National Guard.

Funeral services will be 11:00 AM on Saturday, July 28, 2018 at First United Methodist Church in Booneville with Bro. Tim Sisk officiating. Burial will in the Booneville Cemetery. Visitation on Saturday will be one hour prior to service at the church.

He is survived by three children, Jimmie Ellen “Gigi” Ward Brumley and her husband Charles, Bill Ward, Jr. and his wife Paula, and John Andy Ward and his wife Rebecca. Seven grandchildren, Ashley Catherine Brumley Bennett and her husband Bo, Emily Ward Johnson and her husband Brian, Patrick Brumley and his wife Savannah, Trey Ward and his wife Leslie, Trent Ward, Anna Kathryn Ward and Jay Ward. Eight great-grandchildren, Ward Johnson, Cailyn Johnson, Mary Ellis Johnson, Catherine Brooks Bennett, Caroline Bennett, Landry Rose Ward, Anne Braxton Ward and Mary Charles Brumley.

He was preceded in death by his parents, wife of 58 years, Mary Anne Gullett Ward, one brother Milton Ward and one sister, Willie Jean Ward.

Pallbearers: Patrick Brumley, Trey Ward, Trent Ward, Jay Ward, Brian Johnson, Ward Johnson.
Honorary pallbearers will be the Tiger Den Coffee Club members.

Memorials may be made to the First United Methodist Church, 400 West Church Street Booneville, MS 38829.

Visitation will be on Friday, July 27, 2018 from 5-9PM at McMillan Funeral Home Chapel.

Condolences may be left at www.mcmillanfuneralhome.com