By Jason Evans
EASLEY – A man who left his mark on Easley, in the classroom, on the football field and in city government has died.
Former Mayor William A “Bill” Carr died at Spartanburg Regional Hospice Home Monday at the age of 86.
Carr’s coaching career spanned more than 30 years. He served as head football coach at Liberty High School, Easley High School and Spartanburg High School from 1948 to 1980.
He was named National High School Coach of the Year in 1978. That same year, Carr received the Order of the Palmetto, the state’s highest civilian honor.
In 1994, Carr was inducted into the South Carolina Coaches Hall of Fame. He was also inducted in the Easley High School Hall of Fame and the City of Easley Hall of Fame.
Carr served as Easley’s Mayor for 16 years, from 1983 to 1999.
Councilman Dave Watson said Carr never raised taxes during his four terms as Mayor.
“That was the platform he went in on and he stuck to it for 16 years,” Watson said.
“That’s quite a feat.”
Carr knew that the city would continue to grow and made plans for the city’s future.
“Being mayor was a part-time job,” Watson said. “He made it a full-time job. He talked everybody into getting an administrator. He said the city would was going to need somebody to help run things. That’s why we have a city administrator. He had enough foresight to see that.”
Carr was instrumental in saving West End Hall, Watson said. Today, the hall’s conference center is named in honor of Carr.
Easley Chamber President Kent Dykes remembered Carr as “a gentleman.”
“He was such a stable force for the City of Easley back in some volatile times,” Dykes said. “He was a wonderful leader. To promote the city, that was his Number One goal. He was always up front with you. You knew where you stood with him. The community and the people of Easley was his number one priority.”
In 1999, Carr was awarded the Silver Crescent, which recognized outstanding achievements and recipients’ contributions to their communities.
Watson said Carr was “a brilliant man.”
“His memory was unbelievable,” Watson said. “If he met you once, he’d remember you the rest of your life.”
Funeral services for Carr will be at 4 p.m. Thursday at First Baptist Church, Easley with Rev. Dr. John Adams and Mr. Rut Galloway officiating. Burial will follow in Westview Cemetery in Liberty.
The body will be placed in the church at 1:30 p.m. Thursday. The family will receive friends from 2 p.m. – 3:45 p.m. in the church narthex, prior to the service.
Former coaches and players of Liberty High School, Easley High School and Spartanburg High School are asked to serve as Honorary Escorts.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Spartanburg Regional Hospice Home, 686 Jeff Davis Drive, Spartanburg, SC, 29303 or to Meals-On-Wheels, 419 E. Main Street, Spartanburg, SC, 29304.