WILLIAMS, John ‘Big John’

Sheriff John “Big John” Williams

Birth: Unknown
Death: November 23, 2019


Sheriff John “Big John” Williams Sheriff John “Big John” Williams, passed away on Saturday, November 23, 2019. Funeral services will be held Monday, December 2, 2019 @ 11:00 a.m. at the Garrett Coliseum, 1555 Federal Drive, Montgomery, AL 36107. Burial will follow in the McQueen Cemetery, Hayneville, AL. Body will lie in repose on Sunday, December 1, 2019 at Hayneville Middle School, 101 W Lafayette St, Hayneville, AL 36040 from 12:00 noon to 7:00 p.m. Bell Funeral Home-Hayneville, AL directing.

General Information
Name: John Williams Sr.
Date of Birth: Unknown
Date of Death: 11/23/2019

Visitation Information
When: Sunday, 1 December, 2019
Time: 12 Noon
Location: Hayneville Middle School
Address: 101 West Lafayette Street

Service Information
When: Monday, 2 December, 2019
Time: 11 AM
Location: Garrett Coliseum
Address: 1555 Federal Dr, Montgomery, AL 36107

Arrangements were made by Bell Funeral Homes, 2228 Tuskenna Street, Hayneville, AL 36040, (334) 548-5122

Published Wednesday, January 2, 2008, Gulf Coast Newspapers, Baldwin County, Alabama

By WSFA Staff | November 29, 2019 at 1:25 PM CST – Updated December 1 at 4:06 PM
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) – On Monday, Lowndes County Sheriff John “Big John” Williams will be laid to rest in Montgomery.

Williams was killed in a shooting Saturday night at a Hayneville gas station, and his community continues to mourn. According to a program for the funeral, Williams grew up in Lowndes County, graduating from Calhoun High School in 1976. He began his career in law enforcement in 1978, first volunteering as a reserve deputy, later working for the Hayneville Police Department, then serving as a deputy for the Lowndes County Sheriff Department. In 2010, he was elected sheriff, and he was reelected in 2014 and 2018.

Williams’ married Joann Williams in 1976, and the couple had two children.

“Meeting you John was like a gift from God, Marrying you John was the bond that united our hearts,” Joann Williams said in the program to her late husband. “The laughter, the joy, the tears and smiles, Together we shared them all and traveled many miles.”

The Alabama Boys will perform at the funeral, and several people are scheduled to speak, including Montgomery County Sheriff Derrick Cunningham and Senator Doug Jones. See the full program below:

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Amy Furr, 24 Nov 2019
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A well-known Lowndes County Sheriff was killed in the line of duty Saturday night in Hayneville, Alabama.

Sheriff John Williams, also known as “Big John,” was killed outside a QV convenience store at the intersection of Highway 21 and Highway 97 on Saturday around 8 p.m., according to AL.com.

Williams had responded to a call from the store owner who asked officers to disperse a group of people that were standing around outside the building.

Just after 10 p.m., the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency (ALEA) issued a Blue Alert for the suspect identified as 18-year-old William Chase Johnson, who was reportedly driving a stolen vehicle which he later abandoned.

However, Johnson returned to the scene of the alleged crime just after midnight carrying a handgun and was taken into custody. The ALEA then canceled the manhunt, according to Fox 5 Atlanta.

Saturday evening, Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall announced the tragic loss on Twitter.

“Tonight, Alabama mourns the loss of Lowndes County Sheriff ‘Big John’ Williams, who was killed in the line of duty. Sheriff Williams dedicated over 40 years of his life to public safety, including 19 years as Sheriff. Please pray for his family and fellow officers. #ThinBlueLine”

The attorney general also issued a press release that read:

“Sheriff Williams is the fifth line-of-duty death of an Alabama law enforcement officer to gun firhe this year and the sixth to lose his life overall in our state over the last 11 months. Serving the public in the role of a peace officer is a difficult calling, fraugt with peril, yet thankfully many Alabama men and women choose to answer the call, often time putting their lives in danger to protect us. It simply cannot be said enough that we owe these heroes our gratitude and our support.”

I know all Alabamians join me in passing along our condolences and prayers to Sheriff Williams’ family and to the Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office.

Johnson, who is from Montgomery and the son of a law enforcement officer, was arrested and charged in August for possession of brass knuckles and being a minor in possession of alcohol. However, those charges were later dismissed, court records said.

Michael Jackson, the district attorney for Alabama’s Fourth Judicial Circuit, called Williams a “great friend,” adding that “he was a great sheriff but an even better person.”

“He really cared about the Black Belt. He came over to Selma many times to help fight the gang problem,” Jackson concluded.