William "Bill" Layton Decker
1938 - 2024
July 16, 1938 – January 21, 2024
William “Bill” Layton Decker, of Winston-Salem, will be missed but not
forgotten after passing away Sunday, January 21, 2024, shortly before
midnight at the Kate B. Reynolds Hospice Home at the age of 85.
Bill was born in Penn Yan, Yates County, New York on July 16, 1938, to the
late Clifford Ralph Decker and Bessie (Salsbury) Decker. He was preceded
in death by his wife of 63 years, Joy Marie (Kimbell) Decker, and his twin
brother, John Howard Decker.
Bill graduated from Penn Yan High School in 1957 after he had joined the
Army reserves for which he served seven years attaining the rank of
Non-Commissioned Officer. He was a cook in the reserves and was
stationed in Upstate New York and Fort Jay on Governers Island, NY.
After high school, Bill’s career was in retail management and he was
employed by several companies, including J.M. Fields, Mason’s
Department Stores, Barker’s, and MediMart Pharmacies. This afforded him
the opportunity of residing in Holyoke, Massachusetts; Concord, New
Hampshire; Fairless Hills and Glenolden, Pennsylvania; Freehold,
Hightstown, and Glen Rock, New Jersey; Danielson, Branford and Short
Beach, Connecticut; Bluff Point and Dundee, New York; Mocksville, North
Carolina and lastly Winston-Salem, NC.
Bill loved his hobbies of cooking and woodworking. Not only did he enjoy
these as a pastime, he brought in extra money by selling the woodworking
pieces he crafted and by catering various events. He was always interested
in trying new things from sewing a vest for his catering business to opening
a gift shop with his wife, the love of his life, Joy. Over the years, he also
especially loved his cats.
Bill wanted to be a minister when he was younger; however, life took him in
other directions, but he always remained active within the Methodist
church. In his later years, he attended the First Baptist Church of Penn Yan
with his mother where he organized and cooked dinners to fundraise for
various projects at the church, including the children’s ministry.
After relocating to North Carolina, Bill became active in Hardison Methodist
Church where he felt called to lead a weekly prayer meeting and a weekly
bible study. One of Bill’s greatest regrets was that he would not be able to
finish the bible study he had started.
It was important to Bill that a library be founded at the church. His final wish
was that posthumously his Christian book collection and some furniture be
donated to establish it. Consequently, the church will be lovingly setting up
the William L. Decker Memorial Library in his honor.
Left to cherish his memories are his daughter Lori (Thomas) Bernard of
North Carolina; Wilner Holder of New Jersey; grandchildren Christopher,
Lily, Emma, and Matthew Bernard of North Carolina; sisters Sally Zane and
Linda (Elmer) Canfield of New York; sister-in-law Beulah (Boots) Decker of
New York; and many nieces and nephews across the country.
Due to Bill’s family being located throughout the country, no service will be
held at this time.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Hardison Methodist Church at
1630 Jericho Church Road, Mocksville, NC 27028.