James “Jack” Preston Williamson Jr. ’56

James “Jack” Preston Williamson Jr., 84, of Dacula, GA, passed away in his sleep January 5, 2019 in the comfort of his home. The love of his life and wife of 29 years, Carole Lee Williamson, was by his side.

Jack is survived by five children, Katherine Williamson of Franklin, NC, Lane Williamson, Jay (Elaine) Williamson, and Blake Williamson all of Atlanta, GA, Christie (West) Love of Dacula, GA, sister Jill Williamson Montana of Highlands, NC, and three beloved grandchildren, Katie Rose Nixon, James Love, and Matthew Love.

He was preceded in death by his parents James Preston Williamson, one of the founders of the Winn-Dixie Grocery stores, and Doris (Hill) Williamson, and first wife and mother of four of his children, Anne Patrick Williamson (Glisson).

Jack was born March 5,1934 in Greenville, SC. He graduated from Greenville High School and Davidson College. After marrying his first wife they moved to the Washington, DC area, where he served his country in Army Intelligence.In 1960, Jack moved the family to Jacksonville, FL where he worked at the corporate headquarters of Winn-Dixie.

While successful in the family business, he was at heart a Renaissance man and chose a different path; leaving Jacksonville for Atlanta in 1967.He lived the rest of his life in and around Atlanta with the exception of many glorious Summers on Martha’s Vineyard and two years living in St. Augustine, FL.

A true a bon vivant, Jack packed a lot of living into his 84 years. He was a pilot, a poet, a sailor, an artist, a musician, a bibliophile, an audiophile, a motorcyclist, a car collector, a photographer, a philosopher, a Realtor, a cook, a raconteur of jokes, limericks and tales, a published author (Frozen Lightening), a student of history, and the most honest grading contractor in Atlanta. Finally, at the age of 70, he discovered his true professional calling as a flight instructor. He was by all accounts a patient, wise, and gifted teacher devoted to the art and craft of flying and to his students.

The family will meet privately to witness a flyover of the missing man formation, led by old friend John Downing. A casual remembrance for family and friends will be hosted by Jay and Elaine Williamson on Sunday, January 13.Some of Jack’s favorite foods, forbidden in recent years but enjoyed during his last days, will be served. 

In lieu of flowers please donate to the charity of your choice, or enjoy a chili dog and a side of rings at the Varsity in Jacks honor.