WEB Wallace Eugene "Bill" Rucker, age 98, a United States Navy World War II veteran passed away peacefully on June 4, 2022. He was preceded in death by his parents (Jefferson and Nancy), two brothers (Reed and Byron), one sister (Helen), the mother of his children (Jean) and one son (Mike). He is survived by his wife, Madeline, one son Jeff and wife Sharon, three stepdaughters, Denette Hodge and husband Tim, Delora Hodges and husband Tim and Deniece Smith and husband Barry. Also, six grandchildren, thirteen great-grandchildren and a number of nieces and nephews. Bill was born January 28, 1924 in Crabapple, Georgia. He graduated from Milton High School and entered into the United States Military at age 17. After Basic Training he was sent to Iowa State College for a 9 month Aviation Engineering Cram Course. Upon graduation he was assigned to a PBY Squadron in the South Pacific. The Squadron conducted patrol, reconnaissance and rescue missions in the Solomon, Gilbert and Marshall Islands. He was honorably discharged at the end of 1945 and began a 31 year career with AT&T. His love for God and country was reflected in his community contributions. He was a Life Member of the Boone Optimist Club. In 1968 he organized Little League Baseball in Watauga County, chartered through Little League International Williamsport, PA. New baseball fields were built on State Farm Road by Optimist members supported by Watauga County Recreation, civic organizations and citizens. Bill served on the Boone City Council as Mayor Pro-Tem and served 16 years on the USS North Carolina Battleship Commission under appointments of Governor Hunt and Governor Easley. He was a member of the Snow Lodge #363 and past-president of Appalachian Shrine Club. He was the oldest active member of American Legion Post #130. Bill loved all sports, surf fishing at the Outer Banks, playing golf and following Braves Baseball. He accepted Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior on July 17, 1938 and was a member of Mount Vernon Baptist Church. A service honoring the life of Bill Rucker will be held Thursday, June 9, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. at Mount Vernon Baptist Church 3505 Bamboo Road, Boone, NC. Officiating will be Dr. Greg Heisler and Rev. Bud Russell. Masonic and Military Honors will follow at Mount Lawn Memorial Gardens. In lieu of flowers memorials can be made to: Shriners Hospital for Children ATTN: Processing Center PO Box 947765 Atlanta, GA 30394; Amorem Hospice 902 Kirkwood St. NW Lenoir, NC 28645; Equip Baseball Ministry c/o Mt Vernon Baptist Church 3505 Bamboo Road, Boone, NC 28607 The family respectfully requests no food. On line condolences may be shared at the website www.austinandbarnesfuneralhome.com Austin & Barnes Funeral Home and Crematory is serving the Rucker family.