Archive for December, 2009

Hamilton, AL – Ms. Willie Viola “Billie” Bonds Rice, age 87, of Hamilton, Alabama, passed away Friday, December 18th, 2009, at Sunset Manor Nursing Home in Guin, Marion County, Alabama.

At 1:30 p.m., December 21st, 2009, a graveside service was held at Hamilton Memory Gardens where she joined George, Connie, and Debbie as family and friends said “see you later” and Eli sang “Shine on Us”.

In addition to her parents, two sisters, and two brothers, she was preceded in death in 1984, by two daughters: Deborah Jean “Debbie” Rice, and Connie Jo Rice Frederick; and in 1988 by her husband of 50 years, Dr. George Robert Rice.

Born on December 16, 1922, in Haleyville, (AL),she was the daughter of the late William Riley “Doc” and Ophelia Viola (Williams) Bonds. She grew up in Winston County, (AL).

“Billie” Rice, to those who knew her best, was one of a kind.

If it was something she believed in, she gave it her all and had an opinion about almost everything. She was the kind of daughter that even though she had a husband working to get through college, a young child and pregnant with another, came home to care for her terminally ill mother. A daughter that moved her father into her home so she could take care of him the last few years of his life (he called her “William”).

The fourth of five children, she was the sister that everyone came home to. All family get-togethers were at her house. She always cooked and made everyone feel at home. Driving a milk truck in Florida during the war, she was a homemaker most of her life. The kind of wife that helped her husband get through school and establish a veterinary medical practice in Hamilton while raising three little girls.

Often working side-by-side with her husband whether feeding the animals, assisting in surgery or directing his farm calls via the two-way radio. “KIJ230” were the two-way radio call letters and she was often picked-up by the then popular “ham radio” operators that would break in and aggravate her as she notified the doctor of an animal in need.

A faitful wife and helpmate, he called her “Willie” (among other things) and she called him “Porky”.

She was the kind of mother that let your best friend come on vacation with you, always had chips, dip, and coke or some kind of after school snack waiting every afternoon. The kind of mother that took you to the drive-in with a car full of your friends and left so you could have a good time. The mother that said call me if you are going to be late. I won’t be mad if I know you are okay. The mother that your friends enjoyed having stay and be a part of your parties. Always on your side, right or wrong because her girls were never wrong. We called her “MaMa”.

A loving grandmother, the kind that loved to take you on trips and would drive back a long way if you left your blanket at the motel. The one that helped you shower after the birth of her first great-grandson and would fight anyone that tried to run over you. She was “Maw Maw Ricey”.

A great-grandmother that read to, played with and rocked-to-sleep little boys that got too big for her to get up with but would hold them as long as she could before calling for someone to lay them down. She was their “Me Maw Rice”.

Survived by a daughter, (Dr. Susan) Susan “Zonnie” Rice (Lonnie H.) Taylor, granddaughter, Tami (Chris) Williams, and three great-grandsons, Connar George Franklin, Christopher Jameson Elijah Williams and Hubert Morgan Williams.
We will miss her.

(Written by family / Printed in the Journal Record Newspaper December, 2009)

Hamilton Funeral Home, Hamilton, AL., directing.

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