Former BLET General Chairman Pat J. Williams, 1951-2020
INDEPENDENCE, Ohio, November 4 ó Brother Pat J. Williams, former General Chairman of the BLETís BNSF (former AT&SF) General Committee of Adjustment, passed away on October 29 from complications related to a blood infection. Brother Williams was 68 years old.
Brother Williams hired out with the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad (AT&SF) in July of 1969 as a brakeman in Gallup, N.M. He began working as a conductor in 1977 and earned promotion to locomotive engineer in 1978, working primarily out of Belen, N.M. Brother Williams had more than 40 years of membership in the Brotherhood, having joined Division 446 in Belen on August 1, 1977.
A veteran of the United States Navy, Brother Williams enlisted and began active duty on January 15, 1970. He achieved the rank of Petty Officer and worked as an electrician where he served overseas during the Vietnam era. He received an honorable discharge on January 14, 1976.
Brother Williams served the Brotherhood as Local Chairman of Division 446 for two years (1995-1996). In 1996, he was elected Vice General Chairman of the BLETís BNSF (former AT&SF) General Committee of Adjustment. Brother Williams was elected General Chairman at the BNSF (former AT&SF) GCA meeting in 2002, and was subsequently reelected at triennial meetings in 2005 and 2008. Brother Williams did not seek reelection to a fourth term due to his pending retirement, which became effective in December of 2011.
In addition to his General Chairman duties, Brother Williams served the BLETís Western General Chairmenís Association in numerous elected offices throughout the years, including Alternate Secretary-Treasurer, First Vice Chairman, and Chairman.
Brother Williams also served admirably as a member of the Arrangements Committees at the past five BLET National Conventions (2001, 2006, 2010, 2014 and 2018). He was a member of the Arrangements Committee at the 2001, 2006 and 2010 Conventions; Vice Chairman and Team Captain during the 2014 Convention; and Vice Chairman and Team Captain during the 2018 Convention. Also, he had the once-in-a-lifetime honor of serving on the Arrangements Committee during the BLETís 150th anniversary celebration in Detroit, Michigan, in May of 2013.
Brother Williams and his wife Sherry were married on September 6, 1975. He is survived by his wife Sherry; three children: Michelle, Jacob (Jake), and Patrick Jr.; and two grandchildren, Jacob II and Ashlei. Brother Williams comes from a large railroad family, including: his uncle George Williams, a Winslow conductor; aunt Betty Williams, a Gallup conductor; step-brother Sean Brown, a Winslow engineer; son Jacob, a Belen West locomotive engineer and current Local Chairman of BLET Division 446; son Patrick Jr., a Belen West engineer; and grandson Jacob II, a Belen conductor who is currently enlisted in the U.S. Navy.
ďWe are all saddened by the unexpected passing of Brother Pat Williams,Ē BLET National President Dennis R. Pierce said. ďA powerful leader, Brother Williams fought relentlessly to improve the quality of life and working conditions for countless BLET members during his distinguished tenure as General Chairman. He touched the lives of many during his work as a member of the Arrangements Committee at our National Division conventions, and our Brotherhood is a better place because of his kindness and generosity. On behalf of all men and women of the BLET, I extend our most heartfelt condolences to the family of Brother Pat Williams.Ē
The family of Brother Williams is in the process of making final arrangements, and details will be announced when they are available. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations in memory of Brother Williams be made to Mission 22, an organization that provides treatment programs for veterans for Post-Traumatic Stress, Traumatic Brain Injury, and other issues they might be facing:
Wednesday, November 4, 2020
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