George A. Smith & Sons Funeral Home

2812 North Highland, Jackson, TN


Billy G. Spain

April 30, 1934July 26, 2020

Billy Spain, 86, passed away peacefully at home on Sunday night, July 26 with his wife and son Jeff by his side.

He had Parkinson’s for almost 17 years. He was a good Christian man and an outstanding husband and father.

He is survived by his wife Jessie McKissack Spain to whom he was married for 59 years and one special son Dr. Jeff Spain and his wife Michelle who reside in Louisville, Kentucky. He was preceded in death by his beloved daughter, Amy, who was killed in an automobile accident in 1995. Billy had often said to his wife Jessie “I want my life to be judged by the character and accomplishments of our children.” Billy was born April 30, 1934 in Carroll county to Jim and Lula Spain who both preceded him in death. He was also preceded in death by a sister, Aleen Cook, a brother Ernest Spain and two other brothers, Benton and Leon who died in infancy. He is survived by four nephews, three nieces and a brother-in-law John McKissack.

After moving to Jackson in 1942, Billy attended city schools and graduated from Jackson High School in 1951 after which he attended Lambuth College. During college, he learned the Morse Code and became a telegraph operator for the Illinois Central Railroad prior to becoming City Circulation Manager for the Jackson Sun. He later studied accounting, became a Certified Public Accountant for forty-five years and served as a partner with several Jackson CPAs prior to retiring in 2006 from the Jackson office of Alexander Thompson Arnold with whom his firm Arnold, Spain, Truett and Hewitt CPAs had previously merged.

Vigorously pursing his accounting career, Billy served on the Board of Directors of the West Tennessee Chapter of CPAs, the Tennessee Society of CPAs, and the Southern States Conference of CPAs all of which he served as president.

Billy was an active member of the United Methodist Church having served Hays Avenue, St. Andrew and Northside churches in several official capacities. He was a Certified Lay Speaker for the Memphis Conference of the United Methodist Church.

Billy was a member of the West Tennessee Toastmasters Club for several years at which he won speech contests at various levels advancing to the International Speech Contest in Calgary, Canada in 1968. He served as Treasurer of Youth Town of Tennessee in its formative years.

As a member of the Jackson Lions Club, he served on the board for years and was the president for one year. He was active in the Lions Club Little League Baseball.

He was an auditor tabulating scores for the Miss Tennessee Pageant from 1963 to 1995. In semi-retirement, Billy remained active in his community. He was elected to the Board of Commissioners of Madison County in 2007 serving for three terms and serving on many committees. He was also associated with his wife in her construction business in addition to being a licensed real estate broker.

Funeral services for Billy Spain will be held at Northside Church on Friday, July 31 at 11:00 AM. Unfortunately, due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, services will be private with family only but will be streamed live on the Northside Church, Jackson TN Facebook page. Burial will be at Highland Memorial Gardens following the service.

Honorary pallbearers will be Glenda Autry Zimmerman, Larry Shaffer, Winston Truett, Mike Hewitt and Jimmy Harris.

In lieu of flowers, it was Billy’s request that any memorials be directed to the Amy Elizabeth Spain Memorial Scholarship Fund at University of Memphis Law School, Attn: Archie Shelton, 1 N. Front Street #270, Memphis, TN 38103, Amy Spain Scholarship in the memo line.


  • The Funeral Service

    Friday, July 31, 2020



Billy G. Spain

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Wanda Calvert

July 29, 2020

Jessie & family,
We extend our sympathy and prayers in the loss of your loved one. May God's peace and comfort be with you in the days ahead.
Love in Christ, Mike & Wanda Calvert