William Joseph Martin Hydrick, age 71, of St. Simons Island, Georgia, passed away Thursday, June 24, 2021 at Southeast Georgia Health Systems Brunswick Campus.
W.J. as he was affectionately known was born and raised as a young boy in Aiken, South Carolina, later moving to Atlanta. Upon completion of high school, W.J. enlisted in the United States Army and fought in the Vietnam War. W.J. was honored in his service to include National Defense Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal with 1st Oak Leaf Cluster, Vietnam Service Medal with two Bronze Stars, 2 Overseas Bars, and Vietnam Campaign Medal with 60 Device, Sharpshooter Badge with Rifle Bar M-14, just to name a few of his remarkable honors. Upon his Honorable Discharge, W.J. started his career at his family business in Atlanta.
W.J. was a man of deep faith in his Lord with an undying love for his family. Life was a celebration and his life was one well lived. With his many worldly possessions he always held tight to his family and his faith, always putting this first. He appreciated the simple things in everyday life…his love for fishing, golf, morning coffee and grits while bird watching on his porch, and being in nature as he and his wife, LIBBY, loved to camp! They loved their life together, always with their dog Lucie, whether riding their horses, boating, playing golf, and living the “beach life”. Leaving their Atlanta home they moved to be closer to family in Charleston for many years; then onto Florida to soak in the warm weather, enjoy their close friends, and lots of golf. Then later, they moved to St. Simons Island to once again be closer to family. His grandchildren called him both, Papa and Professor Pops while his wife loved to call him, ROOSTER. W.J. was a dearly devoted husband, father, grandfather, and friend who was Proud and Happy with his life.
He is survived by his loving wife, Mary Elizabeth “Libby” Conner Hydrick of St. Simons Island; his daughter, Kelly Hydrick and her children, Malachi and Scarlett, all of Atlanta; his sons and daughters-in-law, Marshall and Jane Beckham and their children, Liz and Ben, all of St. Simons Island also Matt and Jenny Beckham and their children, Conner and Taylor, all of Charleston, SC; and his sister-in-law, Cathy McIntire and her husband, Steve of Signal Mountain, Tennessee; also W.J.’s beloved dog, Lucie.
Family and friends are invited to meet at Heritage Funeral Home, 7454 East Brainerd Road, Chattanooga, TN on Tuesday, June 29th at 12:00 pm. The procession will leave the funeral home at 12:30 for the funeral service with full military honors at Chattanooga National Cemetery, 1200 Bailey Avenue, Chattanooga, TN. The Reverend Ann Brightwell McCord will officiate. Immediately following the ceremony, all are invited to the home of Cathy and Steve McIntire, 2208 Fairmount Road West, Signal Mountain, TN for refreshments and fellowship.
The family would like to extend a sincere thank you to the physicians and staff of Southeast Georgia Health Systems, especially the staff on the 6th floor, and to their church family at Christ Church, Frederica, who helped make this journey a little easier.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in W.J.’s name to Christ Church Frederica, 6329 Frederica Road, St. Simons Island, GA 31522.
Edo Miller and Sons Funeral Home in Brunswick, GA and Heritage Funeral Home in Chattanooga, TN are honored to work together to serve the Hydrick family.
You may sign the register book and leave condolences for the family at www.edomillerandsons.com or at www.hertagechattanooga.com
Local arrangements are by Heritage Funeral Home, 7454 E. Brainerd Road.