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N.A. (Bill) was born on November 20, 1922 on his parent's farm near Dunn, in Scurry County, Texas. His parents were Nat and Myrtle Billingsley, who died in the late 1970's. Bill had one brother, Max, who died in 1976. N.A. graduated in the top ten of his Dunn High School class, which had a total of eleven students in 1940. He was also in the bottom ten of his class. This was at the time that Adolf Hitler (the dictator of Germany) was bragging that Germany was destined to rule the world. World War II started, and of course the U.S. got involved.
A Memorial service was held on February 10, 2021 at First United Methodist Church, Abilene, Texas. A Graveside service will be held at the Texas State Veterans Cemetery in Abilene on Friday, April 23, at 11 am, under the direction of The Hamil Family Funeral Home.
N.A. enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps in 1942. This is where he received the nickname, Bill. During WWII, Bill piloted both the Martin Marauder B-26 and the Douglas Invader A-26 (both medium bombers). Bill served in the Pacific area of operations in the Philippine Islands and on Okinawa. After Japan surrendered on August 14, 1945, he served eight months in the occupational forces for Japan. One of the main jobs Bill had while in Japan was to fly military personnel over Hiroshima so that they could take pictures of a devastated city caused by the atom bomb that was dropped on Aug. 6, 1945. Bill returned home after serving nearly four years in the Army Air Corp. He continued to serve in the Air Force Reserve program and retired in 1963 as a Lt. Colonel. Bill entered Texas Tech School of engineering in 1946 where he met Margaret Cary from Colorado City. They were married on Jan. 31, 1948. Bill graduated from Texas Tech in 1950 and worked for The Texas Highway Department, (now called TXDOT,) for 31 years. He worked part of the time as a resident engineer, district laboratory engineer and as a district administrative engineer.
After retiring from the Highway Department in 1981, Bill served on the Abilene Planning and Zoning Commission and volunteered to serve as a disaster analyst for FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency.) For FEMA, he worked flooding, tornado, and hurricane disasters in New Mexico, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, Kansas, and Texas. Bill also served as a board member for Sears Methodist Retirement System for 19 years. Margaret graduated from Texas Tech and received her master's degree from Abilene Christian University. Margaret taught school at Lee Elementary School for 24 years and retired in 1986.
Bill and Margaret had two children. Kathie (who passed away in July, 2020), and Cary who is living in Midland. Kathie married Mike Eggleston, and lived for several years on the farm where Bill was born. Cary married Becky Hall of Midland. They had two sons. Nathan (their eldest son) married Erin Boring, and they have one daughter Sadie, born on 4/9/2013. They live in Boerne, near San Antonio. Their youngest son Taylor, married Emilie Friedel. They have one son, Jack, who was born on August 8, 2017, and one daughter Charlie born on 10/9/2019, and they currently live in Midland. Bill and Margaret have been members of the Harvester's Sunday School Class at First United Methodist Church in Abilene for many years.
The family suggests Memorial gifts be made to Wesley Court Retirement Center (2617 Antilley Road Abilene, TX 79606) in honor of Bill Billingsley or to the Children’s Ministry at First United Methodist Church in Abilene (202 Butternut Street, Abilene, Texas 79602).
Bill recently said, "I have really enjoyed this first phase of my life, and look forward to the next phase. I’ve read and heard that the second phase is going to be fantastic!" The next phase started on Tuesday, February 9th, 2021.
Friday, April 23, 2021
Starts at 11:00am (Central time)
Texas State Veterans Cemetery At Abilene
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