Billy Ray Calloway, 88, of Crossett, passed away on Sunday, July 21, 2019, at the Life Touch Hospice Center in El Dorado.
He was born on November 20, 1930, and was the son of the late Riley Joe Lee and Naughvell Futch Calloway.
He was raised in Laran, Louisiana and in 1951 graduated from Strong High School where he played basketball and baseball. After graduation, he joined the United States Army during the Korean Conflict and served as a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne.
In 1964, be began a 30-year career with Georgia Pacific and retired as a supervisor in the tissue mill. He was a volunteer fireman for the North Crossett Fire Department for 25 years and a retired member of the Crossett Riding Club.
Billy enjoyed fishing, hunting, and growing vegetables in his garden. For 22 years, he hunted elk in Colorado and always freely shared his vegetables, keeping his neighbors’ cabinets full. He loved watching his granddaughter participate in rodeos around the country and filled the role of the supportive and kind listener for the family he loved dearly.
He is preceded in death by his parents; a daughter, Cheryl Ann Calloway; a granddaughter, Tasha LeAnn Johnson; two brothers, Clarence and Wayne Calloway; and four sisters, Chlorene Jones, Sally Ham, Allie Cantley, and Leola Burns.
He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Elouise Black Calloway of Crossett; a daughter, Anita Higginbotham and husband, James, of Crossett; four sisters, Sudie Garner of El Dorado, Elaine Dees of Hermitage, Jo Ann Smiley of Shreveport, Louisiana, and Martha House of Huntsville, Alabama; a brother, Victor Calloway of Boston, Massachusetts; a granddaughter, Nikol Treat and husband, Shawn, of Gentry; a great-granddaughter, Carson LeAnn Hamilton also of Gentry; and three bonus grandsons, Chad, Shawn, and Stacy Higginbotham and their families.
A Celebration of Life Service will be held Thursday, July 25 at 2 p.m., at Medders Funeral Home Chapel, 1564 Hwy 52 W, in Crossett, with Bro. Harold Cantley and Chad Higginbotham, officiating. Visitation is Thursday, from 12:00-2:00 p.m., at the funeral home prior to the service. Interment will follow the service at Pinewood Memorial Park under the direction of Medders Funeral Home.
Pallbearers are Chris Clark, Larry Cantley, Joe Cantley, Henry Cantley, Stan Calloway, Steve Calloway, Lynwood Dees, and David Dees.