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John's Story

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The world has suffered a loss. John Thomas Williamson, Sr. (Sonny), born Amos Talmadge Robbins, Jr. passed on Friday July 7, 2017 at the age of 91. He was born in Atlanta,Georgia, on October 1, 1925. Adopted by Walter B. Williamson and Clare Mathews Williamson, John was given a loving and supportive home in Albany, Georgia. On June 11, 1949 he married his love, Ava Gene Shealy of Tennille, Georgia. John and Gene enjoyed a wonderful home with their four children: Ava Clare, Tommy, Robin, and LeAnn.
John was a graduate of North Georgia College, where he was elected "Mr. North Georgia College," and was chosen as "The Most Athletic Cadet," and the "Biggest Lady Killer!"
He received a BS in Industrial Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology in 1949 and was a member of the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity. He completed naval flight school at UGA in 1944 and bravely flew for the Navy in the South Pacific arena during World War II.
He began his professional career with Thiele Kaolin Company in Sandersville GA, in 1949. In 1972 he became the General Manager of Freeport Kaolin Co. and later was promoted to President. He founded and served as President of Impex Corporation in 1985 until his retirement at the age of 91. In addition to his management positions, he served on numerous corporations and professional organizations, including the Georgia Mining Association, the Advisory Board of GCSU (1979-82), the Foundation Board of GCSU, the Advisor Board of School Management at UGA, the National Advisory Board of Georgia Tech, and the Foundation Board of Georgia Military College. Always innovative, he obtained multiple patents and authored and published several professional articles. John was the recipient of the Robert Earl McConnell Award for his contribution to industrial minerals technology in Georgia, resulting in world dominance in kaolin.
John was a dedicated and passionate servant to God, Family, and Community. He was extraordinarily generous with his time and many talents. He served on civic organizations, including the Chamber of Commerce, Jaycees, Lions Club, Rotary Club, Kiwanis, and Farmers Club. John was an Eagle Scout and a Boy Scout Leader for many years, an early indicator of his natural generosity and lifelong love of the outdoors.
John was reunited with his birth family at the age of 83. This brought Bernice Johnston, Wesley Robbins, Doris McCleskey, Larry and Elaine Robbins, Carol Robbins, Becky Wells, Linda Duncan, and their children and grandchildren into his life. The reunion occurred after the loss of his siblings Marcella Robbins, Arnold Robbins and Miriam Robbins. Finding the Robbins has been one of the greatest pleasures of his life. A glorious reunion was held on the day of his 60th wedding anniversary to Gene. Of all of his achievements, he valued time spent with loved ones, both friends and family, the most.
John was preceded in death by Gene - his beloved wife of 63 years and is survived by his four children and their spouses, Ava Williamson Scearce, Tommy and Jo Williamson, Robin Williamson and Jane DuBois, LeAnn and Allan MacCurrach; and five grandchildren: Dr. Beth Williamson, Ava Michelle Williamson, Leila MacCurrach, Eryn Williamson, and Sonny MacCurrach. John also has one great-grandchild, Verdie Gene Pearsons. It has been remarked that the two have a lot in common.
John was so fortunate to find love again with Linda Brown Sloan, who mirrored his love of life. Together John and Linda shared many wonderful moments and adventures - the beach and the mountains, sunsets and gazing at the stars. She was at his side when the Lord called him home.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorials be made to the First Baptist Church, 330 South Liberty Street, Milledgeville, GA 31061 or the John T. and Gene Williamson Scholarship, GMC Foundation, 201 E. Greene Street, Milledgeville, GA, 31061. A Celebration of Life Service will be held at First Baptist Church in Milledgeville on Wednesday, July 12, 2017. Visitation with the family will be at 1:00 pm, followed by the service at 2:00 pm. Graveside services will follow at Baldwin Memorial Gardens.
Visit www.mooresfuneralhome.com to express tributes.
Moores Funeral Home & Crematory has charge of arrangements.
Published on July 10, 2017
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