Jean Williams

Graveside Service

2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Thursday, April 4, 2024
Westwood Cemetery
100 Public Work Drive
Carrboro, North Carolina, United States
Graveside Service

Obituary of Jean Williams

Please share a memory of Jean to include in a keepsake book for family and friends.

In loving memory of Jean J. Williams, a remarkable woman whose vibrant spirit touched the lives of many. We announce her peaceful passing on the evening of Thursday, March 28, 2024, at the SECU Jim and Betsy Bryant Hospice Home in Pittsboro, North Carolina.

Born on November 7, 1941, at Watts Hospital in Durham, NC, Jean's journey began in Durham, North Carolina, where she was an avid Girl Scout. She later moved to Pittsboro in her teens, and then to Chapel Hill, embracing a diverse career path that showcased her resilience and passion

Jean's professional life was as varied and interesting as she was. After a brief stint at ECU, Jean pursued her passion for healthcare at Watts Nursing School, becoming a dedicated nurse. Years later, seeking a new challenge, she trained and worked as a dental assistant for a decade. Following the loss of her beloved husband Harold Williams, Jean's entrepreneurial spirit led her to take the helm of the family's building and construction business, Orange Builders. Jean's tenacity in this new role was not just a career shift but a tribute to her late husband’s legacy, which she upheld with honor and success for over a decade

Jean was a vibrant member of the Chapel Hill Garden Club, where her passion for flora found a communal spirit. Through her active involvement, Jean helped cultivate not only gardens but also friendships, leaving a lasting legacy in the local horticultural community, and leading to her final venture, the ownership of a flower shop, which was her passion for the last twenty-five years of her life.

Jean was an accomplished traveler and enjoyed adventures near and far, including a trip of a lifetime to Hong Kong with her dear sister. Her love for the coast was evident in her frequent trips to Emerald Isle, NC, where she found joy in the serenity of the sea – and the delicious seafood!

As a fervent supporter of UNC athletics, Jean's enthusiasm was infectious, especially during March Madness. Her son Harold, Jr. shared her love for Carolina, but instead of traveling with her, he’d stay home, get friends involved, and do some serious unapproved spring cleaning. If you knew Jean, you know she wasn’t happy about it, but that didn’t stop them from doing it year after year. 

Known for her iconic beehive hairdo and her fondness for a Tom Collins, or Strawberry Daiquiri, Jean exuded elegance and a uniquely Southern charm. If you ever received a card, a note, or a check from her, you’d know that Jean's exquisite calligraphy was a work of art, a reflection of the beauty she saw in the world. She was a woman of faith and looked forward to joining her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in heaven. 

Jean was preceded in death by her husband, Harold McDonald Williams, and her parents, Herman Thurman Johnson and Emma Smith Johnson. Jean's enduring legacy lives on through her son, Harold M. Williams Jr., daughter-in-law Elizabeth Fiorentino Williams, sister Virginia J. Roper, niece Alicia Springfield and her husband Donnie, nephew Adam Roper, niece Ashleigh Hale and her husband West, two great-nieces, two great-nephews, and a soon-to-arrive great-great-niece.

A graveside service will take place at 2:00 pm on Thursday, April 4, 2024, at Westwood Cemetery in Carrboro, North Carolina. 

To continue Jean's legacy, as a prominent supporter of The Rams Club, memorial gift contributions can be made to The Educational Foundation, Inc. and directed to support the Harold M. and Jean J. Williams Memorial Scholarship.  Checks may be made payable to The Educational Foundation, Inc. reflecting Harold M. and Jean J. Williams Memorial Scholarship in the memo line. Checks may be mailed to The Educational Foundation, Inc., P.O. Box 2446, Chapel Hill, NC, 27515 (phone 919-843-2000).

Share Your Memory of