James William "Billy" Atkins, 81, of Rome, GA, died Tuesday, June 25, 2013. He was born May 15, 1932 in Rising Fawn, GA to Arthur Haynes Atkins and Ovie Ella Crowe Atkins. He is survived by his wife of 58 years, LaVance Clement Atkins and his children: a son, Bill Atkins and his wife, Janna Waters Atkins of Marietta, GA and a daughter, Nancy Atkins Bilek and her husband, Ed Bilek of Cincinnati, OH.
His family will remember him most for his sense of humor and the love of his five grandchildren: Will, Barrett, and Anna Kate Atkins of Marietta, GA; Ethan Bilek of Cincinnati, OH and Darius Dalton of Atlanta.
He graduated from Darlington School and the University of Georgia where he was a member of Alpha Tau Omega fraternity and the U.S. Air Force ROTC program. After serving as a Lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force during the Korean War, he returned to Rome where he built a successful real estate business over the next fifty years. He and his family are also remembered for the years they owned and operated the Aloha Restaurant.
He held memberships in the Rome Area Chamber of Commerce, the Rome Board of Realtors, the Rome Area Bulldog Club, the Coosa Country Club and the University of Georgia chapter of the Gridiron Secret Society. He was a founding Board member of the Georgia State Bank of Rome and a recipient of the University of Georgia's Dan McGill Award for lifetime service.
The funeral service was held Friday, June 28, 2013, at 1 p.m. at the First United Methodist Church with the Rev. Robert Brown officiating. A private interment was in the Myrtle Hill Cemetery.
The family received friends at the First United Methodist Wilder Family Life Center on Friday, June 28, 2013, from 11 a.m. until the service hour.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that contributions be made to First United Methodist Church of Rome, 202 East Third Avenue Rome, GA 30161.
To 94,000 of his closest friends, GATA.