William Rivers, 77, died Thursday, September 2, 2021 in Chattanooga.

You may know him as: “WO”, “William”, “Blimp”, “Rivers”, “Bill” “Big Diamond”, “Buddy”, dad, uncle, stepfather and grandfather . He wore many hats. He has served on the Board of Directors of Southern Credit Union, General Foreman of Norfolk Southern Railroad, Past President of Class ’61 Howard High School, Entrepreneur, Deacon, Trustee, Transportation Coordinator for Westside Baptist Church and President of West Kentucky Vocational School, Paducah, Ky.

He was born on September 8, 1943 to the late Hattie Ellerby Rivers-Taylor and William O. Rivers, Sr., in Chattanooga, where he was raised.

He is a graduate of Howard High School and West Kentucky Vocational School. He was employed by Norfolk Southern Railroad and retired as a general foreman.

He was married to DeHavilland Bonner for 58 years, and from this union were born three children, William Oscar III, Andrea Aneika and JaJuan Oscaesar. They were loyal members of the Westside Baptist Church, where he served as a deacon, administrator and head of the Department of Transportation.

He was predeceased by his father, William O. Rivers, Sr .; mother, Hattie Ellerby Rivers-Taylor; son, JaJuan Rivers.

He is survived by a devoted wife, DeHavilland Bonner Rivers; daughter, Andrea Aneika (Dale) Boyd; son, William O. William Oscar (Donna) Rivers, III; brothers and sisters; Alfred (Sharon) Taylor, Alice (James) Keith, Marion Taylor and Dwight Ash; brother-in-law, Rev. JC (Wylene) Bonner, IV; sister-in-law, Mrs. Juan Bonner (Jerome) Chambers; grandchildren, William Fordham Rivers, Dale Boyd, Dylan Boyd, Christian Rivers, JaJuan Rivers and Keyera Rivers; Six great-grandchildren; nephews, Alfred Taylor, Marcus Taylor, Daron Taylor, Cameron Taylor, JC Bonner V., Oba Bonner and Durius Bonner; nieces, Devonne Fowlkes, Jovan Keith, Sheronda Taylor and Ornisha Harris. Lots of cousins, relatives and many special friends.

The first public screening will take place from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday, September 17 at the Westside Baptist Church, 4001 Hughes Ave., Chattanooga Tn. 37410.

The second visitation will be from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, September 18 at John P. Franklin Funeral Home, 1101 Dodds Ave., Chattanooga, Tn. 37404.

A funeral service will be held at 11:00 am on Sunday September 19, 2021, in the Chapel of Hamilton Memorial Gardens, Hwy 153, Chattanooga Tennessee, 37343

Arrangements by John P. Franklin Funeral Home, 1101 Dodds Avenue, 423-622-9995.


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