William Cullom Bryan

November 1, 1947November 12, 2012
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William “Bill” Bryan, 65, died Monday, November 12, 2012, in Birmingham, Alabama, surrounded by his family. Visitation will be at Wright & Ferguson Funeral Home in Downtown Jackson, Mississippi from 4 pm until 7 pm on Thursday, November 15, 2012. Funeral services will be held on Friday, November 16, with visitation from 1:30 pm to 2:30 pm and services beginning at 2:30 pm in the sanctuary of First Baptist Church of Jackson. A burial service, following the ceremony, will take place at Wright & Ferguson in Ridgeland, Mississippi.

Mr. Bryan was preceded in death by his father, Dr. Clyde C. Bryan, in 2000. He is survived by his mother, Josephine Scruggs Bryan, of Jackson, Mississippi; his three children, Marcy Croft Vick and her husband, Aaron, of Madison, Mississippi, Tracy Rhinewalt and her husband, Michael, of Madison, Mississippi, and William Chase Bryan and his wife, Jordan, of Madison, Mississippi; his four grandchildren, Caroline Croft, Emerson Rhinewalt, Noah Vick, and Ava Croft, all of Madison, Mississippi; his sister, Becky Bryan Allen, and her husband, Charles, of Carrollton, Georgia; his nephew, Chris Allen, and his wife, Julie, and family of Rome, Georgia; and, his bride-to-be, Betty Bridewell, and her two sons, Charlie and Burke, of Brandon, Mississippi.

Mr. Bryan was born November 1, 1947 in Nashville, Tennessee. He attended Hattiesburg High School in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, and graduated from The University of Southern Mississippi having earned both his B.A. and M.B.A. from the school.

Mr. Bryan and his family founded Bryan Tours of Jackson, Mississippi in 1964. He began his professional career at the age of 21 as one of the youngest college professors in the country serving as a full time faculty member at Carson Newman College in Tennessee. After moving to Jackson, Mississippi and taking over the family business, Mr. Bryan worked as a travel executive for over 40 years. He had the privilege of travelling to over 100 countries during his lifetime and also served as the Chairman of the Advisory Board of the Mississippi World Trade Center. In addition to his work in travel, Mr. Bryan was an instructor in the Aspire Program at Belhaven College teaching international business, economics, and marketing.

He was a longtime member of First Baptist Church of Jackson, where he served as a Deacon and a member of the choir. He was also an avid supporter of the Mississippi Baptist Children’s Village and sponsored mission trips throughout the world. Mr. Bryan, as his father before him, leaves behind a legacy of memories and stories from his 40 plus years of travel - some humorous, some adventurous, and some were even rather risky. He was, indeed, a great man who will be loved and missed by his many friends, employees, colleagues, and family.


  • Funeral Service Friday, November 16, 2012
  • Visitation Thursday, November 15, 2012
  • Visitation Friday, November 16, 2012

William Cullom Bryan

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Ann Bryant Whittemore

December 3, 2012

Becky and Mrs. Bryan: I was so sad to hear of Billy's death. I guess the last time I saw him was at Becky's New Year's Eve wedding years ago. I'll always think of him as a little boy. I remember when we were all Sunbeams at the old FBC in Hattiesburg. My mother, Frances Bryant, was the leader. We met on the first floor of that old church. Dr. Bryan came in one day and asked, "How are all the Sunbeams? Whoops, there go two out the window!" The two diving for freedom were Billy Bryan and my brother, Tommy Bryant. Sweet memories. God comfort you and yours. Dr. Bryan baptised my brothers and me and conducted the funerals of my grandfather, E. Wheeler Bryant, and my father, Giles W. Bryant. Lots of connections with the Bryans. All of my best, Ann Bryant Whittemore

Aurora S

November 23, 2012

I was one of his students at Belhaven. He was my favorite teacher. He was open minded, kind, respectful and considerate. He encouraged students to not be judgmental of others. He would captivate us with stories from his business and experience. The best part was that his stories were not just entertaining, they were very useful and practical in the business world. His class was not easy, but it was a wonderful experience. When teaching he would throw in stories about his family, and he spoke about them with great love, especially for his mother. I learned a lot in his class. He was so personable and friendly. I'm very saddened by his passing. My prayers and condolences are with his family and friends.

Georgiana Rizk

November 20, 2012

Billy's passing makes me even more grateful for the opportunity of visiting with him at our last high school reunion in 2010. My fondest memories, however, are growing up with him at First Baptist Church, along with David Berry & Johnny McCann. His father conducted my mother's funeral in 1969, when she unexpectedly passed away. I'll always remember Billy with a smile on his face, a friendly greeting and an ability to make you feel special during each & every conversation with him. I was so shocked to learn of his passing, the first of our classmates to leave this life with whom I shared a long & rich history. My heart is heavy with the knowledge that he's already left this earth. Please know there are so many of us from high school & church that are thinking of & praying for all of you at this painful time. He was truly a good man in every sense of the word. He touched so many lives & his spirit lives on. My deepest condolences to his family and bride-to-be for this untimely loss.

November 19, 2012

My thoughts and prayers are with the family....i grew up at FBC one time.....Dr. Clyde Bryan was our pastor....I remember Bill Bryan fondly. My parents were William E. and Annie Laurie McInnis. Sincerely, Ann McInnis McMullan

November 18, 2012

Bill was a special person who we truly enjoyed while living in Mississippi. He will be missed. Kristy & Don Frame

Jan Levy Mattiace

November 16, 2012

I was shocked and saddened to read about Bill's passing. He was an advertising client of mine for many years and became a good friend. He was always so kind and interesting, and I enjoyed running into him periodically. I will miss his presence on this earth. I am terribly sorry for your loss.

David Berry

November 16, 2012

Bill was one of my best friends thru high school as we shared many of lives experiences growing up. My thoughts and prayers are with Bill's family and his many friends.

Ken and Mary Craft

November 16, 2012

Our condolences to the family. Mary and I really enjoyed the many breakfast conversations with Bill at the Beagle Bagel and he will be missed.

November 15, 2012

Bill visited more countries than most of us know about. He was a gentle spirit, who cared deeply for his family. Your precious memories and God's grace, will sustain you during this time of loss.
Ora Reed
Tokyo, Japan

November 15, 2012

God is near to those that are broken at heart and those crushed in spirit he saves. God will sustain you and help you to endure.