John L. “Jack” Williams, 83, longtime Cle Elum resident, passed away on Friday, March 25, 2022 at the Yakima Memorial Hospital. A celebration of life will be held this summer with details to be announced.
Jack was born on February 19, 1939 in Seattle, Washington to Lewis & Emily (Davis) Williams. He grew up in the Alderwood Manor/Lynnwood area and graduated high school in Everett in 1957. Immediately following his graduation, Jack enlisted in the United States Army and served on active duty for a time before transferring to the US Army Reserves. Jack continued his service to our nation as a reservist for many years, receiving his Retired Reserve certificate in 1999.
Jack worked as a truck driver for many years, starting in his younger years with trips into the Yukon territory. He later drove a regional route for Tradewell, covering stops in Washington and Oregon before finishing his career as a tanker truck driver with Associated Sand & Gravel of Everett. Jack retired from trucking in 2001 and picked up his second, and perhaps favorite, driving career as a school bus driver for the Cle Elum-Roslyn School District for 20 years, retiring from that role in the summer of 2021.
In the fall of 1979, Jack was called by a friend to help someone move. That someone turned out to be the young lady who would become the love of his life, Velda Cox Cramer, and they married on October 27, 1979.
Jack was an amatuer radio operator and made friends from all over via the airwaves. He was very sharp with a great sense of humor. As a very social person, Jack was a regular fixture at both Pioneer Coffee and The Cottage Cafe where he enjoyed the time spent socializing with his friends. Of course, no snapshot of Jack’s life would be complete without mentioning his love of his cats, including Poppy, Josie, Jolene, Juni and Ollie, who will also miss him terribly.
Jack is survived by his wife, Velda, at the family home in South Cle Elum; children Lee Ann (Michael) Murdock of Yakima, Candi Cramer of Clear Lake, California, Melissa Ames of Spring Creek, Nevada and Lewis (Laura) Williams of Bellingham. In addition to numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren, Jack is also survived by his sister Nancy (Bob) Meador of Bothell and sister-in-law Lorna Williams of Lynnwood. He was preceded in death by his infant son, Johnny, as well as his brothers Lewis and Robert.
Memorial contributions in Jack’s honor are suggested to any of our local charities that benefit the health and wellbeing of pets, such as ARRF-Animal Rescue in Roslyn or Kittitas County Friends of Animals.
Johnston & Williams Funeral Home and Crematory of Ellensburg has been entrusted with caring for Jack and his family. Online condolences may be left at www.johnston-williams.com