Waller Funeral Home
Wednesday, September 14, 2022, 9-11 A.M., Waller Funeral Home
Wednesday, September 14, 2022, 11 A.M., Waller Funeral Home
Honoring a Fallen Hero, Who Served Within the Mississippi National Guard
In recognition of our proud American tradition of honorable service which our military men and women have given to their country and our State, we honor a Fallen Hero. Our nation, our state, and the National Guard Association of MS (NGAMS) regard the memorializing of its retired military deceased as an honorable and sacred obligation.
Another great Soldier and Fallen Hero has been released from duty, passed from our ranks on Sep.11, 2022, and moved on to his heavenly home. 1SG(Ret) Ronald “Ray” Wilbourn, age 74, a retired member of the MS Army National Guard who had served within the 1/108th Armored Cavalry Squadron and 2/198th Armor Battalion as 1SG in the Oxford unit, has departed and gone to a better place with our good Lord.
It takes a special person to serve within the military for their country, giving up their family time, comfort, and safety for their country, ultimately for all Americans to enjoy their freedoms, safety, and way of life. We now applaud you for your service to our country. A special message from General Douglas McArthur remains applicable today for our servicemen that have passed: “Old Soldiers never die; they just fade away”.
Rest in Peace Soldier. We applaud your patriotism and brave efforts in serving our country and your family for their support of your service. We thank you for your service. Without your efforts and your families’ support, our country would not stand so boldly, shine so bright and live so free.
You now have earned a rest, so go fly with the Angels, go rest high on that mountain; your work on earth is done. Go to heaven a-shoutin’ Love for the Father and the Son.
Obituary, visitation, and service details:
Mr. Ronald “Ray” Wilburn, 74, died Sunday, September 11, 2022, at Baptist East in Memphis, TN. The funeral will be Wednesday, September 14, 2022, at 11:00 A.M. in the chapel of Waller Funeral Home with Rev. Zach Anderson officiating. Burial will follow in Vaughn Cemetery. Visitation will be held prior to the service beginning at 9:00 A.M.
Mr. Wilburn was born September 3, 1948, to the late William and Wanda Wilburn. During high school, Mr. Wilburn felt called to serve his country, and began his military career. He completed two tours to Vietnam while in the Navy, joined the National Guard, and in 1992, became a fulltime tank commander with the Army. Mr. Wilburn served during Operation Desert Storm, and served in Bosnia, Iraq, and Afghanistan. On September 11, 2002, he was traveling to Iraq for deployment, never daunted by the tasks that laid ahead, always accepting his orders with a quiet sense of bravery. During his military career, he worked as a civilian for the University of Mississippi, and found great peace working on his farm. After his retirement from the military and inspired by his own disability, Mr. Wilburn made it his mission to help other veterans receive the benefits they so desperately needed. Devoting much of his time to this important work, he was appointed State Commander of the Disabled American Veterans. A proud member of First Baptist of Abbeville, Mr. Wilburn had a deep love for his church and church family, gathering together to play dominos and fellowship with one another. He had an active love of trading vehicles, always keeping his eye open for his next ride. Despite his hard work and commitment to his country, Mr. Wilburn always put his family first. He held a close relationship with his only son, Alan, and was overjoyed to watch his grandchildren grow. In addition to his parents, Mr. Wilburn was preceded in death by his brother, G.T. Wilburn.
Mr. Wilburn is survived by his beloved wife, Linda Wilburn of Abbeville, MS; son, Alan Wilburn and his wife, Jennifer of Oxford, MS; brother, Robert Wilburn of Abbeville, MS; sisters, Sandra Allen and her husband, Larry of Abbeville, MS, Jean Jones of Abbeville, MS, and Ruth Hadorn of Abbeville, MS; and grandchildren, Sara Jane Wilburn and Ronald Alan “A.J.” Wilburn, Jr.
Expressions of sympathy or memorial contributions in Mr. Wilburn’s memory may be made to Abbeville Baptist Church Building and Grounds Fund, 15 E Long Street, Abbeville, MS 38601.