William "Bill" Combs left this earth on Saturday, August 25, 2012 at 9:40 am. He died with loving family members by his side. Bill Combs was born to William Combs Sr. and Sophia Humphries Combs on July 17, 1938 in St. Louis, MO. He was one of 13 children. Both parents and 9 brothers and sisters preceded him in death. Bill was raised a staunch Catholic. On April 6, 2003 he was born again and joined All Saints Baptist Church in St. Louis, MO.
After attending Kinloch High School in St. Louis, Bill began his professional career by enlisting in the U.S. Air Force in 1955. When he returned home, he had a short courtship with his sweetheart Ermalene Combs. They married on February 19, 1961.
Bill Combs continued his career with McDonald Douglas Aircraft Company. He later worked and retired from Ford Motor Company in 1988. He also served as a community fire fighter and police officer for the City of Kinloch, MO. He was later offered and assumed the role of Police Chief for Velda City, MO. He was at that time the second youngest African American police chief in the area. Later in life, he was an esteemed member of the Wellston City Council.
In 1988, he pursued his lifelong dream of starting his own business, Combs Towing and Recovery located in the city of St. Louis. Mr. Combs business was his legacy and passion. He enjoyed building and modifying his own tow trucks; sometimes from discarded trailers, ice cream or food delivery trucks.
Mr. Combs is survived by his wife of 51 years, Ermalene Combs; three siblings, Ruth Tate, Credell Harper (Atlanta, GA) and Steven “Bobby” Combs (Palo Alto, CA); five children, Daren Combs, Rhonda Wilkins, Steven Combs, Chassity Combs and Brandra Ringo (Los Angeles, CA), 19 grandchildren; 11 great grandchildren; a host of nieces and nephews; and many loving family members and friends.