Bert Williams, the personable, former long-time head football coach at Georgia Military College, died Monday after a less-than-two-year-battle with cancer.
Williams, who had formally retired from GMC in January, won more than 150 games across more than two decades as the head coach of the Bulldogs' program, was diagnosed with mantle cell lymphoma during a routine medical appointment in December 2019, Williams had shared.
“He was a legend, a great man!,” a coach texted FootballScoop. “Gave me my first job. Unbelievable loss.”
Williams' son issued a statement on his father's passing to the Union Recorder newspaper, the hometown paper of the Milledgeville, Georgia, institution.
“My dad fought a great fight. He stayed positive this whole time and never gave up. My dad was my hero. My brother's hero. And my mom's knight in shining armor. What he did for our family and his GMC family will live on forever. We will miss him forever, and we will continue to honor his legacy in everything we do as a family,” Parker Williams' statement said.
Earlier this summer, Williams was moved to Emory Hospital in Atlanta for treatment of the disease.
On the field, Williams helped young men get their lives on track, realize their four-year college dreams and also produce considerable successes. His Bulldogs' squads played for three National Junior College Athletic Association national titles, winning once, and Williams also was a four-time national coach of the year at the NJCAA level.
A 2010 inductee into the NJCAA Hall of Fame, the Augusta, Georgia, native helped send 430 players on to four-year colleges – many of them in Power-5 conferences such as the Atlantic Coast Conference and the Southeastern Conference – and saw nearly 40 of his former players – 37 – land on NFL rosters.
Davonte Lambert and Dan McCullers, from Auburn and Tennessee, respectively, are just a couple of the former GMC standouts who parlayed their experiences into recent NFL careers.
Williams and his wife, Catherine Ann, had two children: sons Parker and Zachary. Williams was named GMC's Director of Athletics Emeritus in late 2020.