Dr. Odies Williams

Odies Williams, physician and musician extraordinaire

Contributed By:The 411 News

Over 40 years, provided medical care and musical therapy

Odies Henry Williams, III, M.D., 77, a family physician passed away on Monday, November 9. His wife Annette said Odies provided over 40 years of medical care and musical therapy to his communities in Gary and northwest Indiana.

Dr. Williams was active as a musician, playing trumpet professionally in the areas of classical and jazz. A highlight for him was performing “The Trumpet Shall Sound” from Handel’s Messiah with the internationally known baritone William Warfield.

However, Odies was even more active in the area of jazz, having recorded with Cecil Payne (Cerupa), Jodie Christian (Soul Fountain), Ed Petersen (The Haint), Henry Johnson (Future Excursions), Burgess Gardner Big Band (Cabbage Juice), Valparaiso University Jazz Ensemble (For The Moment), and Billy Foster (Portrait).

Dr. Williams also recorded with Robert Day’s Hoosier Blues, performing with that group at the Park Tower Blues Festival in Tokyo, Japan. He recorded his first album, as leader, on Soundmine Records, entitled “What’s Up Doc?”. He was also featured on Harry Porterfield’s ABC TV series “Someone You Should Know.”

He also performed with many other top jazz musicians, including Sonny Stitt, Don Patterson, Johnny Griffin, Slide Hampton, Eddie Henderson, Curtis Fuller, George Coleman, Damita Jo, Art Hoyle, and as a member of the trumpet section of the Burgess Gardner Big Band, backing up several leading performers, including Clark Terry, Houston Person, Ernie Andrews, Frank Wes, Monty Alexander, Freddy Cole, Barbara Morrison, and Everett Greene.

Also to his credit are performances at the Chicago Jazz Festival, Chicago Blues Festival, and Chicago’s African Festival of the Arts with his quintet and also as a member of the Jimmy Heath Big Band. He regularly appeared in clubs in the Chicagoland area including Andy’s Jazz Club, Jazz Showcase, and Green Mill.

He was born in Gary, Indiana, on August 16, 1943, to Odies Henry Williams, Jr. and Myrl (Miller) Williams, who preceded him in death. Dr. Williams graduated from Roosevelt High School in 1961, where he cultivated lifelong friendships and developed his musical talents.

While completing his undergraduate studies at Purdue University, he was initiated into Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. (Nu Chapter). He attended Howard University College of Medicine, remaining in Washington, D.C., to complete his residency at Freedmen's Hospital. He returned to Gary and started his medical practice.

He leaves to cherish his memory his loving wife, Annette; his children Odiesha Andry (Corey), Odies H. Williams, IV, and Jazmine Williams; his grandson Corey Andry, Jr.; his brother, Darryl Williams; his nephews Reggie Williams (Taryn) and Kalen Williams; his cousins Mary Ann Canty-Reedus and Wilton Crump; and a host of relatives, close friends, musician colleagues, and patients.

Visitation service is Monday, November 16, 2020, from noon to 8p.m. at the Guy & Allen Chapel, 2959 West 11th Avenue, Gary. Masks will be required. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, a private funeral service will be held for the family.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Brother's Keeper.

Story Posted:11/14/2020

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