Cover photo for William "Bill" M. Fulcher III's Obituary
William "Bill" M. Fulcher III Profile Photo

William "Bill" M. Fulcher III

February 9, 1934 — September 23, 2022

William "Bill" M. Fulcher III

Augusta, GA – On Friday, September 23, 2022, “Coach” William (Bill) Marcus Fulcher III, loving husband of Bequi Coar, went to be with the Lord following a brief illness surrounded by his loving family at home. Bill was the son of William Marcus Fulcher II and Mary Bell Fulcher and was born in Augusta, Georgia on February 9, 1934 at University Hospital. As a young child, Bill loved football and would listen to the University of Georgia Bulldog games on the radio. He knew all the players names and the positions they played. When he was 8 years old, his father took him to his first big football game at the University of Georgia. On the way home in the car, Bill told his father that when he grew up, he was going to be a football player.

He attended William Robinson Elementary and that was the first organized football team he played on against Lamar, Monte Sano and John Milledge. The kids in the neighborhood would ride bikes over to Henry Street and play football and called themselves, “The Henry Street Gutters.” Bill was their coach and played every position. Many times, they would ride their bikes down Walton Way, a dirt road at the time, to Allen Park, located behind the old Sears Roebuck to play football and baseball.

Bill played football, baseball and ran track at the Academy of Richmond County (ARC) and graduated in 1951. His father sent him to Darlington Prep for a year, in Rome, Georgia, as he was young, so he’d have a chance to get bigger and stronger to play collegiate football.

He enrolled in Georgia Tech (GT) and was a member of Sigma Alpha Epsilon, “SAE” fraternity. He was a walk-on for the football team and played under the legendary coach, Bobby Dodd. Bill was then awarded a full scholarship, was voted captain of the team, and was a starting linebacker. He played in the Cotton Bowl and two Sugar Bowls. Bobby Dodd once said, he had speed, agility, and desire. He, also, lettered as a catcher for the Georgia Tech Baseball team.

While at Georgia Tech, he played for the semi-pro football team, the Daytona Beach Thunderbirds, under Coach Buddy Asher. After playing a game at Georgia Tech, he would drive to Daytona Beach to play with the Thunderbirds on Sunday afternoons.

Bill really loved football. He persuaded a GT coach to write to the Washington Redskins to let him try out. He tried out and went back to Georgia Tech to finish his Senior year. On a Friday night, he got a call from Coach Tereshinski, who said, “I need you here in DC.” He flew to DC and ate and practiced with the Redskins on Saturday. On Sunday afternoon, he made the first tackle on the kickoff of the Redskins game, as a linebacker. His father was watching the game on TV as the announcer said his name, his father jumped up and said, “That boy is supposed to be in his room studying at Georgia Tech.”

He graduated from Georgia Tech in 1956, after his first season with the Washington Redskins. He played for the Washington Redskins from 1956 to 1958. At the time, they were one of the eight NFL teams in the league. Bill was a starter at linebacker and on special teams. One of Bill’s proudest moments was tackling one of the toughest football players who ever played the game, Big Jim Brown. During the Redskins off season, Bill enrolled at the University of Georgia to receive his Certification in Education. While in attendance, Coach Wally Butts asked him to coach the freshman team that summer. In the fall, he’d go back playing for the Washington Redskins and continue playing. After the Redskins, he went to Canada to play football until a knee injury ended his professional football career. Bill was the first person from the CSRA to play in the NFL.

He enlisted in the Army in 1959 and was assigned to Ft. Gordon in the Military Police. Bill accepted the head coaching position at Screven County High School as his first real coaching job. He was the first Screven County football coach to achieve a 10-0 record and win the 2-A Championship. In 2012, he was inducted into the Screven County High School Athletic Hall of Fame and the Friends of Bill Fulcher Endowment Fund was established.

Next, he coached at the ARC where his team won the region Title. In 2014, he was most honored to be inducted into the Academy of Richmond County’s Hall of Fame. After this, he became the head football coach at Burke County High School in Waynesboro, GA.

Later, he became the assistant coach at Georgia Tech, then assistant coach at University of Florida, under Doug Dickey, and then head football coach at the University of Tampa. While in Tampa, Florida, he owned and operated Captain Bill’s Seafood Restaurant and Bill’s Sandwich Shop.

In 1972, Bill was named head football coach at Georgia Tech. They won at the Liberty Bowl by one point. He coached two years at Georgia Tech and resigned with a winning record.

He began a new career in commercial real estate with Cousins Properties in Atlanta. He moved to Augusta, Georgia and graduated from Augusta Law School in 1980. He became the Broker-in-Charge of Sherman Hemstreet Real Estate Company and finished his career as a broker with Meybohm Commercial Realty. He won the Gould’s Award for creative sales for many years and was a life member of the Million Dollar Club. He was a member of The Augusta Country Club, and the chairman of the old downtown Athletic Club. He loved playing racquet ball and built and owned Augusta’s first Racquet Ball Center, near the Augusta Mall. You could always find him in the evenings jogging around the YMCA track and lifting weights and working out. He did 100 sit-ups on a daily basis and was football ready, hoping he’d get a call back to play once again; but instead, he had back surgery at the age of 82. He once ran fifty miles in one day and wore out three pair of converse shoes along the way. He was an avid golfer and enjoyed playing with his friends on the Wal-Mart team at the Augusta Country Club. He was so proud when he came home with an extra $5.00 in his pocket from good playing. He loved going to Waynesboro, GA to Quail Hunt with his father and friends and liked to recite and write poetry, while crediting his English teachers at ARC. But his real passion was singing Gospel and Country music and playing his guitar.

In 2015, he was inducted into the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame in Macon, Georgia. This was another most amazing award, as it featured all of the years he was on a team as a football player.

In 2013, he was interviewed for the Georgia Tech Living History Program. Their mission was to collect, preserve and present the history of Georgia Tech alumni, faculty, and staff through the stories of their people. Bill was able to tell his story about being a student, player, and coach at Tech.

In 1947, Bill’s parents took him and his brother to the Bell Auditorium for the Billy Graham Crusade. Bill was 13 years old and walked down front to Billy Graham with many others to accept Jesus Christ as his Savior. While in New York City in 1957, he spent a week with the Billy Graham Crusade in Madison Square Garden.

He was a loyal member of the Cason Bruker Sunday School class at First Baptist Church in Augusta and sang many years in the church choir.

Bill loves his beautiful family and was blessed with many, many fantastic friends. He leaves behind his loving companion and wife of 37 years, Bequette (Bequi) Coar. His three children are daughters, Mary Dawn (Bob) Street, Watkinsville, Georgia, and Allison (Brian) Hippenstiel, Harlem Georgia, and son, William Marcus (Rock) Fulcher IV, Thomson, Georgia, and stepson, Geoffrey Coar, Newport Beach, California, and his brother, Simeon Bell (Mimi) Fulcher, Augusta, Georgia. He has eleven grandchildren, Laurel, Sterling, and Olivia Street; Bobby and Blake Throne; Skye, Tia, and Sofia Fulcher; and Justin, Matthew, and Katie Grace Coar.

Bill loved and was thankful for all the servers, waiters, and cooks at S&S Cafeteria on Walton Way for being his friends and serving him many delicious and healthy meals for many, many years. The family wants to thank Bee Wilson, his most loyal friend for always being there to care for him and the staff at SouthEast Hospice for their exemplary care.

“And if they ask what happened to me, of what caused my death to be, just tell them if they are still curious that it was really nothing serious.”

The family will receive friends Monday, September 26 from 5:00 until 7:00 P.M. at Thomas Poteet & Son. The memorial service will be held on Tuesday, September 27, 2022 at 11:00 A.M., in the Storey Chapel of First Baptist Church of Augusta, 3500 Walton Way Ext., Augusta, GA 30909. Honorary pallbearers will be his football and golfing friends.

Memorial contributions may be made to any of the following: ARC Football, Academy of Richmond County, 910 Russell Street, Augusta, GA 30904 or to Friends of Bill Fulcher Endowment Fund (to support Screven County High School Athletics) Dr. Jimmy High, 736 Hillwood Drive, Statesboro, GA 30458, or First Baptist Church, 3500 Walton Way Ext., Augusta, GA 30909, or to a charity of one’s choice.

Thomas Poteet & Son Funeral Directors, 214 Davis Rd., Augusta, GA 30907 (706) 364-8484. Please sign the guestbook at www.thomaspoteet.com
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