Born February 12th, 1938, to Ida Mae Williams and John Wesley Williams in Marianna, Arkansas. He was one of 10 children. His Parents Ida-mae and John Wesley (preceded him on death), Sisters – Ella-mae and Pearl (preceded him in death) Louise, Lucille, and Ruth. His Brothers – James, Andrew, Robert, and Melvin.
Cornelius was baptized and accepted Christ at an early age and was and a faithful member of the deacon board for over 40 years. He served under the leadership of Dr. Reverend Howard Randolph at New Greater Second. He Continued on his ministry at New Light Church under multiple leaderships of Rev. Roosevelt Bradley, Rev. Willie Randolph, and Apostle Derrick Shepard (1st Corinthians).
Cornelius received his education at Mildred Jackson School in Hughes, Arkansas. He moved to Chicago, IL in June 1962 where he began work at Rock 10. He expanded his family by adding two daughters, Mary, and Sidra, and two sons, William, and Cornelius Jr. Later, Cornelius and Andrew Lee began to date in 1968. Cornelius accepted Andrew and her daughter, Brenda, into his life during this time. The two later got married on December 24th, 1980 and the rest is history. The love he had for his wife was unmatched. I could often hear his voice saying, “Hey Baby” or “You sweeter than sweet, those bees ain’t got nothing on you”.
He was a man of great wisdom and faith. He always demonstrated Gods love. You often catch him sitting on the front row greeting you with open arms, a big smile, and yelling to the preacher “go head, go head”. He always reminded us that no matter what obstacles we faced in this life, we will be victorious and put it in the hands of God. To many, he was not just Deacon Williams, Cornelius, Uncle Neal but known as Papa. He was everyone papa and he loved his family and would always say “if you just have faith of a mustard seed, He’ll do it”. He was a loving husband, father, grandpa, mentor, and friend with a great sense of humor. There was nothing he would not do for his fellow man. If you needed a ride to church or an extra dollar, he was the man to go to. His love for fishing was a something that he always shared with anyone that was willing to listen. If he was not at home or church, you know he was at a lake somewhere waiting on that big catch. The joy of seeing that contiguous smile and laugh and hearing the powerful words of wisdom will truly be missed.
Cornelius leaves behind his precious wife: Andrew Lee Williams. His 3 daughters Mary, Sidra, Brenda. His 2 Sons: William, Cornelius Jr. His 6 Grandchildren: Quincy, Andrea (Antonio), Demmary, Andrianna (Demetrius), Brittani, Charles. His Sisters: Louise, Lucille, and Ruth. His Brothers: James, Andrew, Robert, and Melvin. His 5 Great-Grandchildren: Antonio Jr, Kenyon, Avery, Alexander Jr, Demetrius Jr. A host of nieces, nephew, in laws, and friends.
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