William Fredrick Austin ’51

William Fredrick Austin ’51 died Apr. 29 at home. “Willie” was born June 21, 1928, in Charlotte, N.C., to William Pharr and Willie Rose Austin. He was a 1946 graduate of Harding High and played in the 1945 Shrine Bowl. He attended Davidson College on a football scholarship and graduated from N.C. State University in industrial engineering. He was an Air Force veteran serving four years during the Korean conflict. Willie worked for Charlotte Pipe and Foundry for 37 years, retiring as senior VP of foundry operations in 1993. He loved working for what he said “was a great company with even greater people.” He was an avid golfer was part of the Fowler Group and the Neff Group. Willie loved spending time with his children and grandchildren. He especially cherished the time he spent with his wife, Minnie, in their mountain home watching her garden flowers and plants grow. They shared many special moments together. Willie was a sweetheart of a man, kind and gentle to all who knew him. He will be missed. Willie was preceded in death by his wife of 50 years, Minnie Besser. He is survived by his daughter, Cynthia Redman, and grandchildren, Lucas and Ellie; son, William F. “Rick” Austin Jr., and grandson, Will, 7512 Hurstbourne Green Dr. #D, Charlotte, NC 28277-2506; daughter, Allison Olive (Lee Olive), and grandchildren, Allee, Austin, and Addis; sister, Sue Galayda (George); and sister, LaRue Dill.