Ray Williams returning home to be COTR Grand Marshal

Ray Williams 2The 2015 Christmas on the River committee is excited to announce this year’s Grand Marshal of the 2015 Day Parade to be held on Saturday, Dec. 5: Ray Williams.

Williams, a Demopolis native, recently set a world record by squatting 938 pounds at the International Powerlifting Federation Raw Classic this past June. He also took home first place for the second straight year in the superheavyweight (264-pounds plus) class with a total lift of 2,205 pounds, including 517 pounds in the bench press and 750 in the dead lift.

Ray Williams squatWilliams was part of the 2004 Undefeated Tiger Championship team under coach Doug Goodwin. He also won two state championships in Track and Field throwing the shot-put in both 2004 and 2005. He earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Tennessee at Martin and his master’s degree from Western Kentucky University. He is currently enrolled at Western Kentucky University and working on his EDD in hopes to be a high school educator/administrator one day.

He currently coaches football at Itawamba Community College, located in Fulton, Miss.. He has also worked as a graduate assistant for the University of West Alabama and University of Tennessee at Martin.

He is the son of Shirley Williams and Orlando Williams. He has two sons: Tae’Sean Williams and Daniel Singleton and one daughter, SaRaya Williams.

He is training for his next meet, which will be in Scranton, Pa. on Oct. 18, an event that will help him qualify to make the World Team. World competition will be held in Killeen, Texas this year.

Williams is excited to be this year’s Grand Marshal and said feels blessed to represent Demopolis on such a grand scale.

“I love my hometown no matter how far I go in this life; there’s no place like Demopolis Ala.,” Williams said.

The announcement of Williams as Grand Marshal for the event follows the July reveal of Susanna Naisbett as the 2015 COTR chairperson.

Naisbett leads a committee that includes Rebecca Hasty, Morgan Nelson, Katharine Glass, Lisa Martin, Jacob Kerby, Stewart Crawford, Ann Parsons, Dee Wright, David Anderson and Linde McAdams.

Christmas on the River is set for Dec. 2 through Dec. 5. Fair in the Square vendor applications and parade applications are now available and can be picked up at the Chamber office.

COTR pageant applications are available at Demopolis City Schools and the Chamber of Commerce office. Pageants are Oct. 3 and Oct. 5-7.