1997 Regular Session

To: Rules

By: Senator(s) Simmons, Walls, Gordon, Mettetal, Hawks, Turner, Burton, Jordan (24th), Minor, Frazier, Horhn, Carlton

Senate Resolution 22


WHEREAS, our colleague and dear friend, Representative William Richardson, departed this life on March 25, 1997, after a long and distinguished career of service to his state and his country; and

WHEREAS, William Richardson received his early childhood education at Stephenville Elementary School and Carver Elementary School, and his high school diploma from Gentry High School in Indianola, Mississippi, in 1969; and

WHEREAS, he was a graduate of Mississippi Valley State University where he received his Bachelor of Science Degree in Social Studies, and did postgraduate work at both Mississippi Valley State University and the University of Southern Mississippi; and

WHEREAS, William Richardson was a Social Studies teacher for 19 1/2 years in the Indianola School District, teaching at the Carver Middle School, Indianola Junior High School and Gentry High School, his alma mater; and

WHEREAS, he was a devout member of the Mount Olive Missionary Baptist Church where he served as a Senior Deacon and devoted much time and energy to his community and profession, including his participation as a Master Mason, and a member of the Mississippi Association of Educators, the National Educators Association, the Indianola Association of Educators, past President of the Parents Teachers' Association, the Board of Directors for Delta Housing Development Corporation, the Rasberry United Methodist Mens' Club, the University of Southern Mississippi Law Related to Education Program, the Secretary of State Voters Awareness Program and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People; and

WHEREAS, William Richardson was known for his many contributions to his fellow man and as a role model and leader to all citizens in the way that he lived his rich and full life; and

WHEREAS, William Richardson was elected to the Mississippi House of Representatives in August 1992, to represent Sunflower County, District 31, where his ability, character and skill as a legislator were recognized by his colleagues, and he represented his constituents courageously, conscientiously and with pride; and

WHEREAS, while serving in the House of Representatives, William Richardson was appointed to the Agriculture, Fees and Salaries of Public Officers, Municipalities and Penitentiary Committees, and was also appointed to the Joint Legislative Parole Commission; and

WHEREAS, William Richardson's most prized appointment was the Education Committee, and through that appointment he was able to passionately effect change in the area he deemed of paramount importance to the future of his community and the state, the education of the youth, who are the future; and

WHEREAS, in August 1994, William Richardson was appointed by the Speaker of the House to serve on the Parole Commission to study the possibility of doing away with pardons in Mississippi; and

WHEREAS, during his campaign, William Richardson repeatedly said: "Don't judge me by the color of my skin, but by the content of my character," and he will always be remembered as a man of character whose integrity and commitment truly surpassed any issues of race; and

WHEREAS, William Richardson was married to the former Doris Hearon, a graduate of Jackson State University with a Bachelor of Music Education Degree and veteran music teacher at Carver Elementary School; and

WHEREAS, they were the loving parents of two daughters, Hope, a Freshman Speech/Communicative Disorders major at Jackson State University, and Tiffany, a junior at Gentry High School; and

WHEREAS, because of his numerous accomplishments in public and private life, William Richardson will be forever remembered by the people of Mississippi for his integrity, dignity, courage and the joy he left in the hearts of so many:

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE SENATE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, That we do hereby commend the life and public service of our dear friend and colleague, William (Bill) Richardson, and offer our deepest condolences to his wife and family on this sad occasion.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That copies of this resolution be furnished to Mrs. Doris Richardson and to members of the Capitol Press Corps.