Pilgrim Baptist Church of Savannah Pastor Dies in Crash

A Pilgrim Baptist Church of Savannah Pastor and former Vice President of the National Baptist Convention, USA, Rev. Clarence Williams dies in a crash at 64.

Rev. Williams reportedly died in a car crash on Thursday after he ran off the road and hit a culvert, which caused his car to flip.

WTOC 11 reported that the crash happened around 6:30 p.m. while Williams was driving in the area of Highway 67 at Anderson Cemetery Road. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The congregation of Pilgrim Baptist Church of Savannah and the leader in the city has taken to social media to mourn the late pastor since his demise.

Thomas J. Sills, a local minister who leads Connor’s Temple Baptist Church expressed his condolence in a Facebook statement. He wrote: “My heart is broken to hear about the passing of my friend, brother, piano instructor, and spiritual son. Pastor Clarence Williams was truly one of a kind. His contribution to the Savannah community on so many different levels will be truly missed.”

Georgia state Sen. Derek Mallow said Savannah lost a “giant” in Williams.

“Yesterday we lost a giant in our community in the person of the Rev. Dr. Clarence Williams who traded time for eternity! A trade that most of us were not prepared to see him make. As I reflect on his journey, I am reminded of the profound impact he had on our lives and the lives of countless others,” his Facebook statement read in part.

Savannah Mayor Van Johnson said the death of Williams who he described as “my brother and friend” hurts.

“I went through this day in a daze, going through the motions trying to wrap my mind around the loss of my brother and friend, Rev. Clarence ‘Teddy’ Williams. Twenty-four hours after our last conversation, he left us suddenly and tragically,” Johnson wrote in a statement on Facebook Friday. “He was a unique soul who was always unapologetically himself but loved God, his family, his city, and Savannah State University. I extend my prayers to those forever changed by his journey through our lives. This one hurts.”

Prior to his death, Williams was a former moderator of the Berean Missionary Baptist Association made up of dozens of churches throughout the Savannah area. He also served as chaplain of the Chatham County Sherriff’s Department and the Savannah State University National Alumni Association.

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