In the late evening hours of October 17, 2023, Ronnie Bernell Williams, fondly known as Bernell, went to his heavenly home. Born on the 4th of July 1948, in Marianna, Florida, Bernell illuminated the lives of those around him with his faith, love, and valor.
Bernell was the cherished son of the late Coley A. and Evelyn Poole Williams. He was the beloved brother of the late Myrene Williams and the treasured son-in-law of the late Edward and Beatrice Bamberg. Bernell was a devoted husband to his surviving wife, Jenell Bamberg Williams, his sweetheart of 50 years. He was a loving father to his sons, Jeremy Williams and his wife Christia, and Jonathan Williams, and his wife Kristie. He was a doting brother to his surviving siblings: Rethell Burch (James), Marilyn Hatcher (Gene), Beverly Whiddon, Russell Williams (Frances), and Maxwell Williams (Pam). Bernell was also a proud grandfather to Brandon, Leandra, Bradleigh, Kinsley, and River. His nieces, nephews, and extended family members, who survive him, will forever remember his warm smile and kind heart.
A 1966 graduate of Marianna High School, Bernell furthered his education at Nashville Auto Diesel Technical College and FAMU, where he earned his BS Degree in Vocational Education. Bernell served his country bravely as an ARMY Vietnam Veteran. Upon returning home, he dedicated 30 years of service to the Florida State Hospital as a Mechanic and Vocational Instructor and Trainer, empowering others with knowledge and skills.
Bernell was a man of great faith, an active member of Shady Grove Pentecostal Holiness Church, where he held various roles and responsibilities. He was a man who lived his faith, a beacon of light in his community, and a guiding star to his family. As Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.” Bernell embodied this sentiment, walking with faith and leading with love.
Bernell was a man of simple pleasures. He loved to fish, cherishing the quiet moments by the water. He relished time spent with his family, particularly during their annual summer vacations. He was a passionate fan of FSU football, and his love for speed and excitement led him to travel and attend NASCAR races.
Bernell was a loving, faith-filled, and courageous man. His faith was unshakeable, his courage unwavering. He loved fervently, lived faithfully, and led courageously.
In the words of the Apostle Paul, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” (2 Timothy 4:7) Bernell fought the good fight, finished his race, and most importantly, kept his faith. As we remember Bernell, let us celebrate his life, honor his legacy, and strive to live our lives with the same love, faith, and courage that he demonstrated throughout his life.
A Celebration of Bernell’s Life will be at Shady Grove Pentecostal Holiness Church on Friday, October 20, 2023, at 11:00 AM Central Time. Interment will follow in Shady Grove Cemetery. Visitation will be Thursday, October 19, 2023, from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM Central Time at Shady Grove Pentecostal Holiness Church. McAlpin Funeral Home in Sneads, FL is assisting the family with arrangements.
Condolences may be made online at www.mcalpinfuneralhome.com