Charles William Wooten
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Charles William Wooten
  • August 16, 1935 - July 17, 2017
  • Columbia, South Carolina

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COLUMBIA - “Hallelujah! What a morning, when I touch the nail scarred hands, when I cross from Grace to Glory, I am bound for the Promised Land.” On July 17, 2017, Bill Wooten entered the Kingdom of God and now walks, with no pain, on streets of gold. He joined his parents, John Hamp and Ruth Rawlinson Wooten; along with his older brothers, John and James but to Bill they were always called Sonny and Buddy.



Born in Columbia on August 16, 1935 he was blessed to be raised on “the hill” in Lower Richland surrounded by numerous cousins and family. He enjoyed the family reunions each year to see and catch up with all of his extended family and friends.



When Bill was a young boy, The Wooten family moved to Greensboro, NC and made a home there. Bill was an outstanding athlete, winning many accolades and awards. He married his high school sweetheart, Betty Gray Myers in 1954 in her father’s house in Greensboro, NC. Betty wore the same wedding dress as her sister-in-law, Letha when she married Bill’s brother, John. Bill and Betty were blessed with three children, Kathy, Ginger and Chip.



Bill was a printer for almost forty years. When he retired, he volunteered full time and worked with the Billy Graham Crusade in Columbia and in New York for two years. He traveled the world, visiting Korea, China, Romania and Russia preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ. He was a member of Temple Baptist Church for almost thirty years where he served as a deacon and Sunday School teacher. He taught Bible study fellowship courses for years and served in our prisons bringing the gospel to the incarcerated, including men on death row. Bill and Betty are current members of Shandon Baptist Church where Bill served on the Security Team before his health began to fail.



Bill began a second career volunteering as a reserve deputy for Richland County. He became a full time deputy and served the people of Richland County faithfully for years. He was easy to recognize as one of the oldest deputies working on the road and by his white hair. Sheriff Lott was quick to point out that Bill put the younger deputies to shame as he could outwork and out shoot deputies half his age.



Faith and family defined Bill. Bill was a loving husband to Betty for sixty-three years. He was a devoted and loving father to his children and every night he stopped and kissed them goodnight and said, “I love you”. His children are his legacy and he leaves Kathy (Jim) Bailey, Ginger (Todd) Walter and Chip (Jade) Wooten to continue with his work. Bill was blessed with grandchildren that he loved and adored. He delighted in watching them grow into adulthood and was so proud of each of them. The first-born grandchild was Shannon (Eric) Cilli, then Nicole (Matt) Grantham, Julia whom he always called his blond hair, blue eyed baby girl (Nick) Walter Zell, Jimmy Bailey, Lauren Steading, Brittney (Daniel) Burke and Chris (Jessica) Wooten. God continued to bless him with great grandchildren and his joy continued to multiply.



Bill’s favorite song was “Because He Lives” and while we grieve and will miss him daily, we rejoice knowing that Bill is with his Savior. For the Bible says: “And when I awake in Heaven, I will be fully satisfied, for I will see you face to face.” Psalm 17:15 “And God has reserved for his children, the priceless gift of eternal life; it is kept in Heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay. And God, in His mighty power, will make sure that you get there safely to receive it, because you are trusting him.” 1 Peter 1:4-5.



The family would like to thank Lutheran Hospice, particularly Melinda and her team. Memorials may be made to any organization that furthers the Kingdom of God. Burial will be private at Mill Creek Cemetery. A celebration of life service will be held at a later date. Dunbar Funeral Home, Northeast Chapel is assisting the family.