Billy Prater McReynolds, age 86, of Houston, Texas passed away on Sunday, July 12, 2020. He was born on December 13, 1933, in Dawson, Texas. His father passed away when he was just 4 years old. He was the youngest son of a mother who found herself 27 years old and on her own. His mom was a strong woman who would put herself through college and even a masters degree. Billy would grow up in dorms and on campuses in north and central Texas. But while his mom would never marry again, she would not raise her boys alone. Billy was raised by the McReynolds and Prater clans along Hwy 31 between Waco and Corsicana. They taught him hard work, discipline and a love for the Lord. Those things would provide him with the skills to graduate from Corsicana High School. From there he would pursue a business degree from Baylor University. At Baylor, he met and married Annie Marie Haltmar and upon graduation in 1955, with a Bachelor of Business Administration, he served his country dutifully in the army. He took a job at Ranger Insurance in 1958 and moved to Houston. There Bill and Annie Marie built the family unit he dreamed of building. They joined Baptist Temple Baptist Church and made lifelong friends who would help to raise a family of Christ followers. In 1959, 1960 and 1970 they had three wonderful daughters and then in 1972 a son. He named his son for his father whom he mainly knew through stories from loved ones. Bill worked hard and saved even harder to provide for the family. He taught his children to love others and to love the Lord above everything else. He taught them to lean on each other and take care of one another. He taught them to be resilient, to persevere and not let the world win. He would retire from Ranger Insurance in 1997. His 49 years of service to one company would serve as a testimony of dedication and faithfulness. He loved time with his family most. When they were unavailable, he loved to bird watch, viewing wildflowers and God’s creation, and “fix” whatever might not be working properly at the house. At 12:15 pm on Sunday, July 12th, about the time he had gathered his family countless times to head home from church, he gathered them one last time before leaving his broken body behind. His body and mind were crushed by Alzheimer’s disease but his spirit passed expectantly into his Savior’s presence. Today he no longer sees dimly as in a mirror but rather perfectly as he is face to face with his Creator. He wasn’t a perfect man, but he was a wonderful reflection of the Heavenly Father, an extraordinary husband and a perfect dad. We are eternally grateful for his consistent faith. By God’s grace, we will carry on his legacy of faithfulness. We mourn his absence, but we rejoice in his presence with the Lord. We will miss him but will join him daily as we praise our risen Savior who conquered the grave.
Billy is preceded in death by his father Jim Harry McReynolds, mother Bummie Estelle McReynolds and brother J Carroll McReynolds. He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Annie Marie McReynolds; children Cheryl Tipton, Julie Zimmerman, Ruth Foster, and Jim McReynolds; grandchildren, Kristin Lundy, John Mark Zimmerman, Connor Foster, Garret Zimmerman, Cameron Foster, Audrey McReynolds, Carlie Foster, Hudson McReynolds, and Emily McReynolds; great grandchildren Vera Lundy and Tessa Lundy; son in laws Terry Zimmerman and Mark Foster; daughter in law Missy McReynolds; grandson in law Christopher Lundy and granddaughter in law Audra Foster.
Visitation will be held at American Heritage Funeral Home, 10710 Veteran’s Memorial Dr., Houston, Tx, from 4:00 pm-7:00 pm on Thursday, July 23. Funeral service will be held only for immediate family, but will be streamed live through the American Heritage Facebook page. Funeral service will be at 9 am on July 24.
In lieu of flowers donations can be made to the Shriner’s Hospital who helped the family walk through a difficult experience.
John Mark ZimmermanPallbearer