Obituary: Finis Bill Osier


Finis William “Bill” Osier departed this life and began a new one with his Lord and Savior on Friday, Dec. 18, 2020, at White River Medical Center in Batesville, Arkansas.

Bill was born to F. W. “Jack Osier and Geneva Banks Osier on May 10, 1947.

He was a graduate of Newport High School in 1965. It was an honor for him to share the court with a basketball team he loved.  It was during this time that Bill experienced what he called one of the greatest moments in his life when the Greyhounds won the state championship in basketball. This accomplishment has not been repeated at Newport High School.  Bill went on to play basketball and tennis at Arkansas College (now Lyon College) in Batesville, until his graduation in 1969.

In August of 1968, he married his neighbor, and sweetheart, Sharon Burris, and they spent the next 52 years side by side. Bill was saved and became a member of Surrounded Hill Landmark Missionary Baptist Church, in April of 1968, where he was currently serving as a teacher of the Adult Sunday School class. His church family was so precious to him.  Bill went on to coach several sports at the junior high and high school level; but his love, of course, was basketball.

Bill started his career in Tuckerman, Arkansas which was home for four years.  He then went to Portland in south Arkansas. In 1974 he received a call from John Mullins asking if he would like to come home to Newport.  The rest is history.  Bill taught and coached for the Newport Special School District until his retirement in 1998.  During his career, he was blessed to surround himself with some of the finest young men and young ladies he would ever meet.  He still loved to hear from them or visit when one would show up at the door.

Bill was preceded in death by his parents and by his lifelong friend and teammate Paul Massey.  He is survived by his wife Sharon Burris Osier and 3 children – Curt Osier of Farmington, Arkansas, Jack Osier of Newport, and his “Little Sugar” Jennifer Osier Branch (Joey Branch), also of Newport.  His greatest loves were his grandchildren: Lillian Osier, who is attending Bill’s alma mater Lyon College; Campbell Osier of Vilonia, Arkansas who thrilled his Papa every Friday night on the football field; Josie Branch who is well on her way to being his next talented basketball player, and Tate Branch who kept him entertained at all times.  He loved his children and grandchildren more than life itself and was so proud of each one.  Also surviving are two sisters he loved so much – Janis Osier Graves of Texas and Betty Osier Billings of Tennessee.  Bill and Stan McKee formed a bond while coaching together that was ended only in death.

He will be missed as well by his nieces and nephews and many friends, none of which he ever took for granted. We will all miss his sense of humor, his selflessness, his wisdom, and his famous popcorn.

Graveside service will be 10:00 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 23, 2020, at Fakes Cemetery.


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