Robert Paul Williams, 91, passed away on Saturday, Sept. 18, 2021, at UPMC Chautauqua in Jamestown, N.Y.
Bob was born to Paul and Geneva Pierce Williams on Sept. 5, 1930, and grew up on the family farm in Spring Creek Township. He attended the Cobbs Corners School, a one-room school for grades 1-8, and then he attended Youngsville High School.
His father moved the family to Youngsville and built an auto body shop and used car dealership. Bob joined the National Guard in Warren, and when the Korean War started, his unit was federalized. While serving, he volunteered for jump school and became an Airborne Ranger, serving in the 12th Airborne Ranger Company. During the war, he attained the level of master sergeant.
After his discharge, he went into partnership with his dad and formed Williams and Sons Motor Sales. They became a local dealer for Willys cars, trucks and Jeeps, and later acquiring a franchise to sell International Trucks.
Bob left the dealership and started a long-haul trucking business. Years later, he had a fleet of 8 semi-rigs, hauling Pennsylvania hardwood into Cana-da and returning with Canadian softwood. He then started a lumber yard, selling lumber. During the same time, he received a franchise to sell Diamond Rio heavy trucks.
Bob was proud of his trucks with the multi-color paint jobs and chrome trim. For many years, he put them in the Warren 4th of July parade hauling different Youngsville Sports teams. He also had a collection of classic cars
Ever the entrepreneur, Bob branched into building “ready-made decks” and sold them for years, managing the business right up until the very end.
Bob also entered the political arena. He served four terms as mayor of Youngsville, and one term as Warren County commissioner. He led the fund drive to build the Hilltop Park and Swimming Pool. He donated the lumber to build the Island Park Pavilion and deck over the Brokenstraw Creek. He was active in the local Republican Party. His credo was to streamline government, reduce costs, and cut taxes.
He was a military history buff and enjoyed reading books and watching movies about the military. He kept contact with fellow Korean War Rangers and was elected president of the Korean War Airborne Ranger Association. For years, he organized the “Ranger Roundup” reunions. His uniform hangs on the wall in his house.
In recent years, Bob had cut back on his business enterprise and enjoyed driving around the countryside and going out to dinner with his companion, Patsy Soren-son. He maintained an avid interest in business and politics. He had a number of serious health problems, but he was almost always able to tough it out. He discovered religion late in life and he encouraged other people to “get right with the lord’. He wanted to be ready when his time came.
Bob was preceded in death by his wife, Priscilla (Pud) Dove Wilson Williams; a son, Dewey Williams; a stepson, Toby Wilson; and a sister, Holly McKissock Hipple.
Surviving are sisters: Jeannine Pollack of New York City, and Diana McKissock of Warren; brother, Bruce Williams of Warren; a son, Robert B. (Robbie) Williams of Ir-vine; two daughters: Callie Williams and Roxann Mace, both of Youngsville. Also surviving is his long-time companion, Patsy Sorenson; 16 grandchildren, 21 great-grandchildren; stepchildren: Scott Wilson of Youngsville, Toni (David) Wilson Gruber of Macedon, N.Y., Terri (Bill) Gordon of Warren, and Jamie (Scott) Wilson of Florida.
Due to Covid, a private funeral service will be held at the convenience of the family. Burial will be in Youngsville Cemetery with full military honors conducted by the Youngsville American Legion Honor Guard.
A public celebration of life service will be held at a later date.
The Nelson Funeral Home has been entrusted with the arrangements. Friends and family may leave e-condolences at nelsonfuneralhome.net