Joseph Williams "Billy" Cleiland, age 87, passed away Thursday, February 20, 2020 at East Alabama Medical Center in Opelika, Alabama. He was born July 21, 1932 to Maebelle and James Maybanks Cleiland, Sr. in Jackson, Alabama.
He graduated from Jackson High School in 1950, joined the US Air Force, and graduated from Auburn University. He made his career in education, spending his first years in the classroom in Pensacola, Florida, and continuing his teaching days at Jackson High School. He transitioned into an administrator position with the Clarke County Board of Education during the final phase of his career.
He had an engaging personality with a charming wit and distinct way of telling stories that captivated anyone who shared a conversation with him.
He was preceded in death by his parents and brother, James Maybanks Cleiland, Jr. He is survived by his wife, El Myra Cleiland; sons, Stanley Benton Cleiland, and David York (Jennifer) Cleiland; grandchildren, Daniel Joseph Cleiland, Rachel Irene Cleiland, and brother, Samuel Max (Jeanne) Cleiland.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the charity of their choice or to the First United Methodist Church of Jackson, Alabama.
Condolences may be offered at www.lathanfuneralhome.com.