NO. 17714 • 30 April 1928 - 12 September 1999
Died 12 September 1999 in Jackson, SC
Interred in St. Augustine of Canterbury Episcopal Church, Augusta, GA
WILLIAM GEORGE O'QUINN was born in Waycross, GA. in April 1928 to Mr. and Mrs. James Foster O'Quinn. He lived in Patterson, GA, where he attended Patterson High School. He left Patterson High his junior year and enrolled in Georgia Military College. Bill received his appointment and entered West Point in 1946.
At the Academy, Bill was popular, well-liked, and known for his easygoing, unhurried attitude. When those around him were in real tizzies, Bill was cool, calm, and collected as if in the eye of the storm, frequently declaring "Ah, jes ain' gonna worree 'bout it." His intelligence allowed him to handle academics easily, and indulge himself in all phases of photography and spend considerable time playing bridge. His real passion, however, was dancing. It is said, in four years, Bill never missed a hop.
In June 1950, Bill was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Infantry and was off to Germany for three years. Upon return to the U.S., he was stationed at Ft. Jackson. Because of arthritis and hearing problems, he received an Honorable Discharge on 21 Jan 1955 and returned to Patterson.
In 1956, Bill attended the University of Georgia to earn his master's degree. He taught math and physics and tutored students as well. When offered a position with the Atomic Energy Commission in Aiken, SC, he accepted and purchased a home in Beech Island, SC. During his employment with the Department of Energy he attended North Carolina State University.
In August 1963, Bill married Lorraine, who had four children from a previous marriage - Constance, Marilyn, Alan, and Joan. Bill and Lorraine established residence in Jackson, SC, and Bill became involved in school activities. He provided endless opportunities for the children, ranging from flying lessons to photography, music lessons, and ballroom dancing. He allowed them to make their own academic choices, while giving them unconditional love, support, and experiences they passed on to their children and extended families.
Bill's hobbies were flying, sports, television, playing bridge, chess, reading, and ballroom dancing. He owned a Tri-Pacer plane and another plane called "The Zulu," in which he enjoyed flying and visiting family and friends.
Developing a taste for fine wines, Bill was very proud of maintaining his very own wine cellar, installing an air conditioner to control the temperature. In 1974, while still with the Atomic Energy Commission, he established a real estate business that became a very successful venture. Bill interviewed prospective candidates for entry into West Point and was an active member of the West Point Society of Augusta. He also was a member of the Elks Lodge 205 in Augusta, GA.
Though his loyalty to Army’s Black Knights never wavered, having earned his graduate degree at the University of Georgia, he was an enthusiastic supporter of the Georgia Bulldogs. He attended all their home games and never missed the trip to Jacksonville for the notorious Georgia-Florida game.
Bill was a kind man. He was gentle. patient, caring, and loved by all who knew him. He was a silent giver, expecting nothing in return. He left his family a great legacy and will be missed. On a Sunday morning in September 1999, at 6:15, Bill died from a stroke and an inoperable brain tumor. He was cremated and interred in the Memorial Courtyard at St. Augustine of Canterbury Episcopal Church, Augusta, GA, where he was a member.