William Alonnie Fielder Jr., affectionately known as Lonnie, was born on Aug. 31, 1937, in Thomasville, Ga., and took his leave from us on Aug. 17. A courageous and dedicated soul, Lonnie left an indelible mark on everyone he met. A loving husband, father and grandfather, his presence will be sorely missed by all who knew him. As John C. Maxwell once said, “Success is not counted by how high you have climbed but by how many people you brought with you.” Lonnie’s life was a testament to this quote, with his immense dedication to his work and family.
Lonnie was a resident of Sautee Nacoochee, Ga., after having lived in Columbus, Ga., and Pagosa Springs, Colo. Lonnie had a rewarding career where he loved supporting the infantry soldier. His career spanned 26 years in the development and evaluation of mounted and dismounted U.S. Army night-vision equipment, including four years as project coordinator for the U.S. Army Development and Engineering Center (CERDEC) providing night-vision technical support to the Infantry Center Soldier Battle Lab and Combat Development Directorate, and 20 years as Commodity Manager Night Vision with Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC). He also spent two years as the TOW Missile System project manager’s representative conducting the TOW service test leading to production and fielding. Lonnie’s retirement was hosted by Gen. Jay Hendrix where he was presented the Order of Saint Maurice Award, Civis, by the National Infantry Association. Lonnie worked at the highest levels of the Infantry Center Command Structure, where his work was a calling, not a job. Despite his busy schedule, he was generous with his time. Lonnie was a keen trumpet player with a deep love for jazz music. His passion for service was evident, having served in the Air Force for four years, a courageous act that demonstrated his unwavering dedication to his country.
Lonnie leaves behind his beloved wife, Dolores Fielder; his son, William “Bill” Fielder III and his wife, Jessa; his daughters, Karin Barton and her husband Stephen and Teri Thompson and her husband Jay; his brother, Lucius Mark Fielder; his sister, Barbara Sue Strickland; seven grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents, William and Lila Fielder, and a son, Larry Fielder. Lonnie’s family was the cornerstone of his life. His loving and generous nature will be remembered by all who had the pleasure of knowing him.
We invite you to leave your precious memories of Lonnie and upload photos to the memorial page. Your shared memories will serve as a comfort to the family and a testament to Lonnie’s impactful life.
The family will receive friends Saturday, Aug. 26, from 10 a.m. until service time at noon at McDonald and Son Funeral Home. Graveside service will be Aug. 26 at 3 p.m. at Mt. Yonah Baptist Church, 882 Asbestos Road, Cleveland, Ga.