Skip to content

William Clifton “W. C.” Draper

William Clifton “W. C.” Draper, 98, beloved father,
grandfather, brother, uncle and friend entered his
heavenly home on Friday, Aug. 18, 2023 in Vernon,
His Celebration of Life service will be held on
Thursday, Aug. 24 at 10 a.m. at the First Assembly
of God Church at 2430 Sand Road in Vernon, Texas.
Officiating will be Rev. Bob Diekmann and Rev. Scott
Olson. Interment will be held at Wilbarger Memorial
Park under the direction of Sullivan Funeral Home.
Visitation will be at 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Wednesday
William was born on Nov. 11, 1924 in Pilot Point,
Texas to Ira Clifton and Vern Hutson Draper. He grew
up during the Dust Bowl and the Great Depression.
Although times were difficult he had a good life with
many good memories which he always enjoyed sharing with his family and close
friends. He held his first job at the age of 11 when he chopped cotton with his Dad for
75 cents a day. In 1939, his family settled in Odell, Texas. He attended school there
and continued to work on the farm with his Dad.
In 1944, at the age of 19, he decided it was time to serve his country. He
volunteered and was assigned to the U.S. Army. He served in the Pacifi c Theater as
an infantryman with the 96th Division known as the “the Deadeyes” because of their
accuracy in combat. After basic training in Texas and Hawaii he joined the battle in
Okinawa where they fought for 52 days on the front lines until Okinawa was secured
and the war ended. He received a Silver Star for being in direct line of  fire to help
bring his wounded sergeant to safety and the medics. He also received several other
medals and awards for his service, including, two Bronze Stars, and the Deadeyes
received a Presidential Citation for their service. He returned home to Odell after
fnishing his tour of duty in the Philippines. In his later years he attended reunions of
the 96th Infantryman Division “Deadeyes” and was reunited with many of the young
men that he had served alongside on the front lines of war in Okinawa. This was a
special highlight in his life.
After the war, he returned home to Chillicothe, Texas. There he met, fell in love
and married the love of his life, Maude Elise Manar on August 16, 1947 in her family
home in the White City area. They established their  first home in Vernon, where they
lived and raised their family. They had three children Mike, Jane and Steve.
Following his service in WWII, Draper worked for Castle Aircraft at Victory
Field transforming military trainer planes into civilian planes. He also worked as a
mechanic and at Vernon Manufacturing Company before buying his frst truck and
starting W. C. Draper Trucking Company. He bought and sold alfalfa hay for over 65
years. He was well known for his ability to “test” alfalfa and as a good businessman
most of the men he did business with also became lifetime friends. He continued his
business until just recently, buying and selling his last load of hay this summer. He
decided it was finally time to retire at 98.
He is a member of the First Assembly of God where he served as a board member
and elder for a number of years. His love for God, his country and his family were
unmatched. He and his wife, Maude raised their children in church and were very
active in their service to God and others. William’s family was very dear to him.
His kids and grandkids from the oldest to the youngest were blessed to have him in
their lives. William was called Qua Qua by his grandkids and had a very unique and
individual relationship with each of them.
William, a devoted father, is survived by his children: son, Mike & Brenda Draper,
daughter, Jane and Ken Robinson and daughter-in-law, Linda Draper.
He is also survived by his 9 grandchildren: Ricky, Joe (Katrina), Yvette (Mike), P.
J. (Rudy), Kyle (Amber), Kenda (Brandt), Kade, Levi (Kaylee) and Andrew, and by
12 great-grandchildren: Breanna, Allen, Trenton, Bert, Ava, Kayla (Koby), Kirsten,
Aubrey, Avery, Willow, Jonas, and Kenley; four great-great-grandchildren: Karder,
Korbin, Kycee and Kamille.
He is also survived by his sister and her husband, Laverne and James Rush and
his sister-in-law and her husband, Betty and Wayne Strayhorn. Also, surviving are
numerous nieces and nephews.
William was preceded in death by his wife, Maude of 66 years, his son, Steve; his
parents; his stepmother, Ruby Draper; his in-laws, Daisy and J. A. Manar; and his
siblings: R.D., Lorene, Lillian, Douglas and Berneace.
William Draper will be remembered for his strength, dedication, and the deep love
he held for his family and friends. His legacy will live on in the hearts of those who
knew him through the lessons he imparted, the examples that he set, the friendships
he held and the love he shared.
Memorials can be made to First Assembly of God new building fund.

Leave a Comment