William Loyd Hutcheson, Jr. passed away on Saturday, February 18, 2017. Hutch, as he was called by his friends, was married to Dede Dietrich Hutcheson in 1947, and they had just celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary on Valentine’s Day. Hutch started Hutcheson Shoe Company with his father, William Loyd Sr. and opened several shoe stores in the region called Loyd’s Shoes. In 1963, he merged the shoe company with Wal-Mart Stores and enjoyed a close relationship with Sam Walton. Hutch became Vice President of the Shoe Division, then moved on to being a Vice President at Wal-Mart, overseeing the new Canadian stores Wal-Mart had merged with. He retired in 2000 at the age of 78.
Hutch was a lifetime member of the First United Methodist Church in Fort Smith and served on many committees. He was involved, along with Dede, in leading the youth group called MYF at the time, and encouraged many couples around the country with counseling through Marriage Enrichment. In 1993, Hutch and Dede started the Windgate Foundation which supports non-profit organizations involved with arts and education. Hutch served on the board until his death.
Hutch is survived by his wife of 70 years, Dede; three children, Richard, Robyn (John Horn) and Karen (John O’Neill); three grandchildren, Rick, Alisha and Heather along with eight great grandchildren.
Memorial service will be Tuesday, February 21, at 2PM in the First United Methodist Church Sanctuary in Fort Smith under the direction of Edwards Funeral Home. The family will greet friends at Edwards Funeral Home on Monday evening, February 20, from 5:00 to 7:00PM. A private burial will be held at Roselawn Cemetery in Fort Smith.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the First United Methodist Church in Fort Smith.
To sign an online guestbook, visit www.edwardsfuneralhome.com