Algernon Williams was born to Anna Williams and Harry Oates in St. Louis, Missouri on November 12, 1936. He was one of seventeen children. At 17 years old, he enlisted in the U.S. Marines and served for 11+ years.
Algernon -affectionately called "Beau" by his family and "Willie" and "California Al" by long-time friends -resided in San Diego, California. For many years, he lived in the Logan Heights community. He often shared with younger San Diegans his memories of a prosperous and bustling Imperial Avenue where Hollywood movie stars and well-to-do black San Diegans gathered to party. He said those were the good days.
Later in his life, Al joined New Covenant Worship Center, a small church led by Pastor Gregory Carson in Logan Heights. Al seldom missed a service and always wore the sharpest suits, not to impress others, but because he enjoyed dressing well and believed it was important to always put his best foot forward, especially when entering the house of God. His favorite church services were communion Sundays and Men's Bible studies on Wednesday nights. His style, kindness, and gentle demeanor had a tremendous impact on fellow parishioners, young and old. Brother Al was and is deeply loved and respected by his New Covenant Worship Center family.
Over the years, Al made many good friends in San Diego, but several remained particularly close to him until his passing: Janice Scott, James Watts, Avery Johnson, John Mahaffey, Charles Nedd, Michael Cowan, and Maurice Gray. Each of these friends, in their own ways, did the best they could to look after Al as he got older and his health began to fail.
Al's favorite colors were navy blue and brown. His favorite foods were neckbones and greens. He loved cream soda and rootbeer. He could really dance and liked music you could dance to, including anything by Motown or James Brown. He also enjoyed watching sports on his flat screen television.
California until 1 week before his death. On Friday night, July 31, 2020, he passed away at Alvarado Hospital.
Algernon is survived by 5 sisters: Joan, Mattie, Evelyn, Clara, and Sylvia; and two brothers: Randall and Mosley. He also leaves behind a host of nieces and nephews.
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