Fallen Hero: Lt Col William H. (Bill) Wardlaw (Ret)


Funeral Home

Wright and Ferguson


Wednesday, July 26 at Galloway United Methodist Church, Jackson, 1-3 PM


Wednesday, July 26, Galloway United Methodist Church, Jackson, 3 PM


Honoring a Fallen Hero, Who Served Within the Mississippi National Guard.  “Fallen, Yet Not Forgotten”

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 Airman and Fallen Hero has been released from duty, passed from our ranks on July 14, 2023.  Lt Col William H. (Bill) Wardlaw (Ret), age 81, who had served as a member of the MSANG within  the  Aeromedical Evacuation, 183rd Airlift Squadron 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 Airman.  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.

Another great Airman has gone home, “Fallen, Yet Not Forgotten, Airman for Life”.

Obituary, Visitation, and Service details:

William H. (Bill) Wardlaw died peacefully July 18, 2023, at St. Dominic Hospital surrounded by family after a brief illness. Born November 30, 1941 to Harry and Eloise Wardlaw, he was a life-long resident of Jackson. He graduated from Murrah High School in 1959 and entered Ole Miss where he joined Kappa Sigma fraternity. Following his freshman year, he took a detour through the Marine Corp, then returned to Ole Miss, and completed his BBA degree in Banking and Finance in 1964. He started work at First National Bank, which later became Trustmark, and quickly settled into the Trust Department where he spent his entire career. Bill was a graduate of the School of Banking of the South at LSU, the National Trust School at Northwestern University, and became an instructor for American Institute of Banking courses. An early leader in the field of employee benefit plans in Mississippi, he served as president of the Estate Planning Council of Mississippi. In addition, he was the regional membership Chairman of the Association of Private Pension Plans and was an active member of the Southern Pension Conference.

Wardlaw’s parallel career was in the military. With honorable discharge from the Marine Corp in 1966, he joined the Mississippi Air National Guard serving as commander of Aeromedical Evacuation for the 183rd Airlift Squadron. He was mobilized for active duty for Desert Shield and Desert Storm. Lieutenant Colonel Wardlaw retired from the Air Force in 2001.

Bill had many interests. Reading history, especially World War II fiction and non-fiction, and exploring family genealogy were at the top of the list. Active in the Jackson community, he served on the Boards of Directors of the Rotary Club of Jackson, the Mississippi Opera, and the Greenwood Cemetery Association where he was the long-time treasurer.

Loving to travel, he was fortunate to have short term active duty in a variety of locations around the globe. His first favorite form of transportation was the motorcycle, and his love for cycling continued into middle age. In retirement Bill and Cecile enjoyed traveling across the U.S. and southern Canada in their RV, as well as trips to Europe.

He is survived by his wife of 51 years Cecile Walsh Wardlaw, daughters Mary Wardlaw Boerema and Aimee Wardlaw Cole (Scott), grandchildren, Erin Boerema, Nick Boerema, Victoria Brown, Gale Cole and Kyle Cole, great granddaughter Emilia, his sister Linda Barham (Ron) and her family. He is predeceased by his parents and his daughter Susan Wardlaw Brown.

The funeral service will be Wednesday, July 26 at Galloway United Methodist Church, at 3:00 PM preceded by visitation at 1:00. Interment will follow at Greenwood Cemetery in downtown Jackson.

In lieu of flowers, the family would be grateful for donations to Greenwood Cemetery Association, P.O. Box 55783, Jackson, MS 39296, or to any animal rescue organization.