On a frosty fourth of February morning in 1937, William John Steele entered this mortal life in Eastman, GA. After a long, accomplished and blessed life, he passed into the eternal life of joy and peace Thursday, August 8, 2019. Beginning in his youth,
On a frosty fourth of February morning in 1937, William John Steele entered this mortal life in Eastman, GA. After a long, accomplished and blessed life, he passed into the eternal life of joy and peace Thursday, August 8, 2019. Beginning in his youth, he exulted in professing the belief that Christ had died; Christ Is Risen; Christ Will Come Again- The Christian Faith. He worshiped and served the Lord as a child, teenager and young man in the First Baptist Church of Eastman. There, he was blessed in receiving the outstanding lifetime benefit of the loving, Christ-like pastoral tutelage bestowed by the one and only Rev. Max O’Neal. In 1983, while in the U.S. Army, stationed at Ft. Leavenworth, KS, Steele was led to the Episcopal way of worship and service by the local St. Paul’s Episcopal Church. Over the years he continued to love and serve the Lord as an Episcopalian. For over 20 years he relished in essential Anglican worship duties of commissioned lay reader and licensed chalice administrator. He served on the church vestry and especially enjoyed Sunday school teaching, using probing questions, resulting in spirited discussions. At his passing, Steele was an active and a loving parishioner of Saint Luke’s Episcopal Church, Hawkinsville, GA.
Gen. Steele was the son of the late Ethel Inez Redmond Steele and Aubie Lee Steele. He was a graduate of Eastman High School, where he played trumpet in the Wildcats Band, Class of ’55; He attended Brenau College two years; A Graduate of Georgia Military Institute and the U.S. Army College of International Affairs, Ft. Bragg, NC and the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Ft. Leavenworth, KS.
In 1963 He developed “Steele Acres”, a 40 lot residential subdivision. He was a Veteran of the U.S. Army, a Retired Brigadier General of the Army National Guard, with the Legion of Merit his highest decoration and serving 33 years; He retired from Civil Service with 25 years service and was the former Personnel & Development Director of Three Rivers Home Health Services, where he served for 20 years on the Board of Directors; He was a life member of the Military Officers Association; a Trustee of Orphans Cemetery Association, Inc. since 1976, and Chairman of the Board for 26 years. Also, he was past Chairman of the City of Eastman Housing Authority serving 20 years; a Paul Harris Fellow & former 20 year Rotarian; a life member of The National Association of Railway Passengers and a member of several animal humane and wildlife preservation societies.
Steele was a visionary who left things better than he found them. As Chairman of Orphans Cemetery Association Of Trustees, beginning on the 100th anniversary of Orphans in 1987, he became the bellwether for the monumental task of restoring, preserving, expanding the cemetery and establishing an endowment, which is now well funded. Today, Orphans is indeed one of Georgia’s most beaut