William E. "Bill" Morris, age 86, died recently in the company of his family and his wife of 63 years, Janice Thomas Morris, in Plano, Texas.
He was born Oct. 19, 1921 in Harrison to Eugene and Mittie Porter Morris. He was married to the former Mary Janice Thomas of Eureka Springs.
He was affectionately called "Colonel" and "Pops" by his many friends and the young men he helped coach and mentor over the years.
We served during WWII with the 142nd Field Artillery of Harrison. He was commissioned as a First Lieutenant in the Army Air Corps as one of the first navigator/bombardiers. He was instrumental in the development of the Norton bomb site and the early use of radar.
After the war, he returned to Eureka Springs and owned a grocery store with his father-in-law, Eagle Thomas.
He served in the Korean War and made a career in the Air Force. After serving in Vietnam, he completed a distinguished 31-year career as a member of a B-52 squadron in Michigan.
He is survived by his wife, Janice; his daughter, Janis Cook; his son and daughter-in-law, Will and Lisa Morris, all of Plano, Texas; three grandsons, Brad, Paul and Zack, of Plano; one granddaughter, Jacqui Greene, of Annandale, Va.; and three great-grandchildren, Anna and Samantha Greene, of Annandale, Va. and Ethan Morris, of Plano.
He has three surviving siblings: Don Morris of Orlando, Fla; Virginia Brown of Overland Park, Kan.; and Ann Jean Cochran of San Diego, Calif.
A memorial service was held on Nov. 16 in Roebuck Chapel at the First United Methodist Church in Fort Smith.
Burial was Nov. 17, with full military honors, at the Eureka Springs Cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be made to the First United Methodist Church, 195 Huntsville Rd., Eureka Springs, AR 72632.