Melvin C. `Butch' Williams, 55, city recreation director

December 26, 2005|By MATTHEW HAY BROWN | MATTHEW HAY BROWN,SUN REPORTER

Melvin C. "Butch" Williams of Baltimore, a longtime city recreation director and youth football official, died Dec. 19 at Northwest Hospital Center. He was 55.

Mr. Williams worked for 30 years as a recreation center director and leisure services center coordinator for the city Department of Recreation and Parks. He was a coach and commissioner of Park Heights Little League Football - "his pride and joy," according to his family - and also served as a Sunday school teacher and superintendent.

"He was loving," said his stepdaughter Christy Lewis of Baltimore. "There was nothing he wouldn't do for you. He was always giving - to anybody - and he loved kids."

Born in Baltimore, he was a standout baseball, basketball and football player at Forest Park High School. He played football at Virginia State University, and was inducted into Forest Park's athletic Hall of Fame.

Returning to the city after college, he joined the Department of Recreation and Parks in 1973 as director of Grove Park Recreation Center. He served in similar roles at the South Baltimore and Towanda recreation centers.

In 1998, he was appointed leisure services center coordinator, responsible for the programs and activities of up to 16 recreation centers, after several years serving as acting coordinator. He implemented the Alternatives to Violence and Help Increase the Peace programs, and developed a citywide teen council.

He retired in 2003, but remained in touch with friends and former colleagues, one of whom said they would remember his warmth and "teddy-bear smile."

Mr. Williams also studied accounting at Baltimore City Community College and the University of Baltimore. He became a certified public accountant and opened Williams Tax Service in his basement in 1988.

Services are set for 11 a.m. tomorrow at Concord Baptist Church, 5204 Liberty Heights Ave., Baltimore.

In addition to his stepdaughter, Mr. Williams is survived by his wife of 20 years, Christine Brown Williams; two other stepdaughters, Cassandra Lewis-Faulcon and Erica Lewis; a brother, James C. Williams Jr.; and four grandchildren. All are of Baltimore.

matthew.brown@baltsun.com

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