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William Joseph Foster

William Joseph Foster, 89, of Russellville, passed away Jan. 14 at Russellville Hospital.

He was a longtime resident of Russellville and a member of North Highlands Church of Christ, where he served as a deacon, treasurer and song leader. He was a member, past treasurer and president of the Russellville Jaycees and the Russellville Rotary Club. He also served as president of the Russellville Chamber of Commerce and was a member and past president of the Alabama Association of Public Accountants and Tax Preparers.

Mr. Foster was born in Hackleburg July 18, 1931. His parents were Joseph Henry Foster and Mamie Dillard Foster. 

After graduating high school in 1949, Mr. Foster started college at what was then Florence State Teachers College. He started working while attending college and soon decided it would be best to join the U.S. Air Force until he decided what direction he should go.

He attended Air Force Mechanic School in Amarillo, Texas.  He was retained at the school as an instructor until his four years in the Air Force were completed.  

After being discharged from the Air Force, he returned home to finish his college education.

While at Florence State College, now the University of North Alabama, he was president of the Accounting Fraternity, and as a senior he received the Outstanding Student Award, given by the Alabama Society of Certified Public Accountants.  

After a year working for a CPA in Florence, he returned to Russellville, started working at the Russellville Post Office and opened his own accounting office. During the next nine years, he worked two jobs – as a rural letter carrier and building his accounting practice.

As a member of the Russellville Jaycees he was instrumental in the development of the Twin Pines Golf Course and Country Club.

Mr. Foster is survived by his children, Joseph Alexander Foster and wife Nancy and Ann Scharnagel Foster Burgess and husband Terry; grandchildren, William Jennings Burgess (Candace), Allen Foster Burgess (Emily), Elizabeth Foster Lawson (Corey), John Alexander Foster, Anna Claire Burgess Merck (Mike) and Christian Earl Foster; and great-grandchildren, Jude Thomas Burgess and Clara Annalise Burgess.

He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Judith Ann Scharnagel Foster; his sisters, Louise Foster Whitten and Virginia Foster McLendon; and a great-grandson, Beckham Foster Burgess.

A memorial service will be held Jan. 16 at 3 p.m. at North Highlands Church of Christ with Philip Goad officiating.

In lieu of flowers, please make donations to North Highlands Church of Christ Lads to Leaders or North Highlands Church of Christ Food Bank.

Pinkard Funeral Home, Russellville, is assisting the family.

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