COLUMBUS, Ga. - Billy Joe Coleson, 66, died April 30, 2005, at the Columbus Hospice House.
Born May 13, 1938, in Mounds, Ill., son of the late Lloyd E. Coleson and Ruby Bell Harp Coleson Rogers, he was a member of the Temple Baptist Church. He served with the U.S. Army in Indochina, Korea and the Vietnam War and retired as a staff sergeant from Fort Benning. An expert M16 rifleman, information specialist and relations man, he received the National Defense Service Medal, four Good Conduct Medals, the Vietnam Service Medal with three Bronze Stars, the Vietnam Campaign Medal with 60 Device, an Overseas Service Bar, Air Medal with 17 Oak Leaf Clusters and six service stripes.
On July 20, 1956, he married Shirley Anglin who preceded him in death on May 20, 1989.
He and Mary Frances Moore were married May 5, 1996, and she survives.
Other survivors include: one daughter, Carol Ann Hall of Columbus; two sons, Ricky Coleson of Columbus and Jimmy Coleson of Pensacola, Fla.; four brothers, Harry E. Coleson and Herschel D. Coleson Sr. of Olive Branch, Ill., Thomas F. Coleson Sr. of Advance, Mo., and James Coleson of DeKalb, Texas; three sisters, Marian Sams and Sharon Foster of Olive Branch and Judy Perkins of Kodak, Tenn.; and five grandchildren.
Also preceding him in death were one son, Billy Joe Coleson Jr.; and three brothers, Richard Coleson, Floyd "Sonny" Coleson and LeRoy Coleson.
Visitation is from 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday at the Striffler-Hamby Funeral Home in Columbus, where services are scheduled for 2 p.m. Wednesday with Dr. Mike Stevens, officiating.
Full military honors will be conducted at the Main Post Cemetery at Fort Benning.