William John Crawford, was born in Paterson, New Jersey on March 22, 1974 to the late William “Creecy” Ruffin and Allie Mae (Crawford) Stephens and he was the beloved son of his father, Ralph Stephens. After an extended illness, God called William home at the age of 48 years old on February 4, 2023 at the Mobile Infirmary in Mobile, Alabama.
William received his early childhood education in Paterson, New Jersey and San Diego, California. He later relocated to Mobile, AL where he graduated from Lillie B. Williamson High School in 1993 along with his cousins who he loved as brothers. He was blessed with a brilliant mind and was a gifted artist, drawing freehanded; which was a talent he inherited from his mother, Allie. His talents led him to North Carolina to pursue his studies in Graphic Arts. He was a talented graphic designer throughout his career. His last place of employment was with Expeditors, a Fortune 500 company in Mobile, AL and serving clients internationally.
William accepted Christ as his personal savior at an early age. He furthered his spiritual experience as a member of his grandfather’s home church, Apostolic Faith Church here in Mobile under the spiritual leadership of his father, Pastor Ralph Stephens. He enjoyed listening to his favorite gospel-singing artist Fred Hammond.
William was quiet, timid and a serious thinker. He was humble but walked and dressed with swag. He was kind-hearted with a smile that warmed your heart. Before his health declined, he loved playing electronic games. His favorite food in the world was his mom’s homemade desserts; he was especially fond of her sweet potato pies. A slice was never enough, so she always prepared William his own personal whole pie.
While living in Australia, William met Jessica and the two were united in holy matrimony. To this union, they were blessed with one daughter, Alexia and two stepchildren Jasmine and Tyler. He loved the special times spent with his family.
William was preceded in death by his father William Creecy Ruffin; his great nephew Joshua Ruffin; and his maternal grandparents, Rev. Wilson Sr. and Mrs. Artelia (Bush) Crawford; six aunts Mildred Dean, Joann Crawford, Shirley Crawford Lawyer, Jean Crawford, Irma (Nep) Gatling, Jacquelyn Gardner; four uncles Wilson, Jr., Samuel Gale (Willie Ethel), James Luke, Sr. and Jon Timothy.
William is survived by his loving and devoted parents, Allie and Ralph Stephens. He leaves to cherish his memory, his wife Jessica Russell Crawford of Mobile, AL; his daughter Alexia Crawford; two stepchildren Jasmine and Tyler Russell; four sisters Alecia Stephens Turner of Colorado Springs, CO; Nadeen Ruffin, Rhonda Ruffin and Jamie Ruffin all of Columbia, SC; one brother-in-law Carl Turner; four nephews Cameren and Nathan Turner, Brandon West, Niles Carter; six nieces Brielle, Emanuella and Grace Turner, Brittany Ruffin, Cierra West and Chanelle Ruffin; two great-nephews Xavier and William Ruffin; four aunts Marilyn and Ouida Crawford, Ann Crawford and Doris Jean Crawford all of Mobile, AL; three uncles Andy Lawyer and Charlie Dean of Mobile, AL, and J.C. Gardner of Chesapeake, VA; Godfather John Harris of Paterson, NJ; two Godsisters Tracy Crawford of Mobile, AL and Veronica Crawford-Williams of Paterson, NJ. William was greatly loved and will be missed by hosts of cousins and friends.
A NEW DAY
There will be a New Day that will have no end.
A New Day that will always be morning.
A New Day that will have no noon.
A New Day that will have no evening – no night
A New Day that will have no wind – no storm
A New Day that have no chill or fever.
A New Day where we will neither pray nor preach.
A New Day where we will only sing praises to God…
with all God’s children.
A New Day where we will not have to have a
Mayor, a Governor, or a President –
only the Father and Son to reign and govern.
A New Day where there will not be a doctor.
A New Day where we will not need a lawyer to defend.
Just one day – a day of rejoicing!
Are not we glad for those who will enter there?
Should not we break forth in rejoicing for them now?...
for the change for a better life
May a “New Day” inspire you with peace and hope.
the late Reverend Wilson Crawford, Sr.
Pastor Emeritus, Apostolic Faith Church
(Grandfather of William John Crawford)