1937 William 2021

William Nelson Fernandez

June 27, 1937 — October 28, 2021

William Nelson Fernandez (Bill), 84, of Orlando, FL passed away on October 28, 2021. He was the loving husband for 64 years of Rita Noreen (Woods) Fernandez formerly of Waverly, TN. Born in Boston, MA on June 27, 1937, he was the son of the late William Luther Fernandez and the late Ethlynne M. (Nelson) Fernandez Mong. He descended from many generations of New Englanders including his grandfather Francis Fernandez who fought in the American Civil War. Bill was predeceased by his two half-sisters, Lorraine F. Williams and Gladys F. Batchhelder. Bill graduated from Wooster School in Danbury CT and volunteered joining the 82’cnd Airborne Division in the 508 ARCT. The 508 was transferred to the 101’rst Airborne Division when it was reactivated in Fort Campbell. Though his military service was short he proudly identified as Airborne throughout his life. He graduated from Austin Peay State College and began his professional career in Life Insurance Actuarial Science. Inducted into the American Academy of Actuaries, Bill rose through management ranks until at age 40 becoming the President of Trans-Oceanic Life Insurance Company while also serving on the boards of three other insurance companies and two insurance agencies. Several years later Bill became President of Atlantic Southern Life Insurance Company while Senior VP of the MCM Corp, an insurance holding corporation owning 8 insurance companies in addition to Atlantic Southern. Bill enjoyed golf and bridge throughout his life. He never missed a good documentary. When he moved to Orlando, he adopted the UCF football team and became an ardent fan. He fostered lifetime friendships with his Airborne platoon in the 508 participating in and organizing frequent reunions throughout the South. Upon retirement he served on the City of Orlando’s Mayor’s Veteran Affairs Advisory Council. Bill is survived by his loving wife Rita and his two sons, Nelson Fernandez of Waverly, TN and Keith Fernandez of Orlando, FL; by four grandchildren and two great grandchildren. Bill is interred at the Bakerville Cemetery in Waverly, TN. A celebration of life will be held at the Waverly United Methodist Church, 115 W Main St, Waverly TN 37185 on Thursday November 18 at 4:00 PM. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Flood Victims Relief fund of the Waverly United Methodist Church. LUFF-BOWEN FUNERAL HOME 2400 Hwy. 13 North, Waverly, TN 37185 Telephone 931-296-2437
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