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Obituaries

BILLY SANFORD CHILDERS

Bill S. Childers, President of Childers Enterprises and prominent Amway Independent Business Owner, passed away surrounded by loved ones Wednesday, May 17, 2017 at Beaufort Memorial Hospital in Beaufort, SC. Bill was a resident of Brays Island, located in Sheldon, SC. Born at home in a snow storm on January 5, 1940, in Granite Falls, NC, he was the younger son of the late Sanford Eugene Childers and Lena Mae Abernathy Childers. His earliest memory was living under a textile mill until his family moved to a house in the rural county without indoor plumbing and heated with coal.

Bill attended Hildebran High where he played baseball, football, and basketball and graduated the same day his brother graduated from West Point Military Academy. He then attended Nebraska Wesleyan University for one year where he played baseball and football for the University. He was a member of the football traveling squad while there in his freshman year. Bill also attended the University of Nebraska where he was on the football practice squad and played baseball. After college, he returned home to help his Mom and Dad with their affairs.

In 1963, Bill began his service in the U.S. Army and attended basic training at Fort Gordon in Georgia. After basic training he was stationed at Fort Hood, Texas and served as a lifeguard and a member of the rifle team. He received an honorable discharge from the Army in 1965. In 1972, he was transferred to Charlotte, North Carolina while working for Paslode Corporation.

In 1973, Bill and his family became Independent Business Owners in the Amway Corporation. Together, they built a business that began in the United States and spread internationally into dozens of countries worldwide. The family has achieved the Double Diamond level in the organization. Bill served on the Board of Directors of the Independent Business Owners Association for many years. The business continues on as part of his legacy and continues to be owned and operated by his first wife Hona and their two children. Bill had the natural ability to make friends with people from all walks of life, from top business leaders to the average person on the street. His inspiring leadership helped many people succeed in their own independent businesses. He was highly regarded for his honesty and integrity. He will be greatly missed by his global Amway family.

Bill was a true outdoorsman. He loved spending time in nature and was an avid fisherman, hunter and golfer. He loved doing those things with his kids and loved introducing people to those forms of recreation. He found the perfect place to enjoy those pursuits at Brays Island and was a member of the Brays Island Club for many years.

He was a loving husband and father and built many lasting friendships over his lifetime. He was a loyal friend and business partner. He enjoyed spending time with his friends and always was interested in the lives of others. He was loved and admired by all who knew him and he will be deeply missed.

His loving wife, Deanna, has been his best friend and great supporter since the day they met. She has been deeply moved and thankful for the love he had for her and her family.

He is survived by his wife, Deanna Freeman Childers; his two children, Billy E. Childers of Charlotte, NC and Elizabeth Ann Childers of Boca Raton, FL along with their mother Hona Childers of Boca Raton, FL and Charlotte, NC; and his one and only sibling and older brother, Theodore Eugene Childress and his wife Pat, of Knoxville, TN, along with their children – Gayle, Sandy, Teddi, Linda and Tricia (the California Cousins) – and grandchildren.

The family will receive friends from 10:30 until 11:30 o’clock Monday morning, May 22, 2017, at Copeland Funeral Service – One Copeland Dr., Beaufort, SC 29902.

A graveside service with military honors will be held at 12 noon Monday, May 22, 2017, at Beaufort National Cemetery – 1601 Boundary St., Beaufort, SC 29902.

A celebration of his life will be held on Saturday, June 17th at 2:30pm at Brays Island Plantation, 115 Brays Island Dr., Sheldon, SC 29941.

In lieu of flowers, the family has designated the following organizations for any donations in his memory: MD Anderson Cancer Center, Dr. Sujit Prabhu – P.O. Box 4486, Houston, TX 77210-4486 http://www.mdanderson.org/gifts or Moffitt Cancer Center Foundation, Dr. Antonia’s Lung Cancer Immunotherapy Research Program Fund #33434 – 12902 Magnolia Drive, MBC-FOUND, Tampa, FL 33612 or Global Lyme Alliance globallymealliance.org.

By special request of his children, the memorial for Bill Childers originally scheduled for June 17th, 2017 at Brays Island has been changed to a private memorial in Charlotte, NC.

Online Condolences

  1. Michelle Roberts RN says:

    Scott and I will miss Billy. He was our patient but he was much more than that! Dr. Antonia will keep working hard on his research in memory of Billy. We will be thinking of you all!

  2. Cheryl Perez says:

    May God bless you on this sad time. Me and my husband were part of the amway family years ago. We had the pleasure of meeting Mr Childers. What a pleasant man. My heart goes out to you and your family. Sincerely Cheryl Perez.

  3. Dr. Ed & Ruth Bonomo says:

    DeAnna,
    May the spirit of Bill’s life bring you Peace and much Joy as you travel through this particular time in your life! Bill is and was my dearest personal friend. I loved him as a brother and admired his business success in Amway! He mentored me many times!
    Introducing Bill to the game of GOLF was a pure fantastic achievement, as he embraced GOLF as I have done for over 62 years! Golf was a big part of his life as his wife Deanna was a active golfer of high quality.
    Bill, “T,” Dexter had great experiences together at lake Wylie and on family reunions!

    My heart and mind is filled with much sadness, with tears as I could not say good bye in person, however their is a special place in my heart and mind for Bill. Proud to be his dear friend when in need and always. May the Joy of Jesus Christ bring all that knew Bill Childers,bring a sense of admiration of a disciple of Christ, A REAL GIVER in Life to all that had the pleasure of knowing this friend, husband, father, sportsman and a humble human that made us all better from his presence.
    Thank you Bill!

    Love you,
    Dr. Ed Bonomo
    RIP

  4. christine smith says:

    Please accept our condolences. It is our hope that you continue to receive comfort and peace from God. (2 Cor. 1: 3&4)

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