Pastor William J King

In Memoriam of our beloved Pastor

Thou therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.

And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.

2 Timothy 2:1,2
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CHILDHOOD

William J. King, was born to the late Edward and Pearl King, December 14, 1930 in Coatesville, Pennsylvania, younger brother to Edward King II. On July 16, 2019, Dr. King departed this world to go on to his eternal home with his savior Jesus Christ. Dr. King was always determined to successfully provide for his family, and as a young man, always dreamed of becoming a physician. “There were two Black doctors in my town that were always busy, impressive and professional”, he said, and Dr. King wanted to be just like them. At twelve years old, Dr. King joined the Boy Scouts and learned their creed which was to be reflected in their lives: to be “TRUSTWORTHY, LOYAL, HELPFUL, FRIENDLY, COURTEOUS, AND OBEDIENT. It was here that he first earned survival strategies and values. His home life, Church, and the Boy Scouts gave him unwavering, fundamental values that stayed within him throughout his life.

COLLEGE

In high school, Dr. King played basketball well enough to receive an academic scholarship from the local Elks organization for college, and the community of Coatesville supported and encouraged him to continue his education beyond high school. Dr. colleTo maintain his basketball scholarship, he had to manage both his grades and his performance on the court. He was the captain of VVU’s Basketball team his junior year in college, and while playing basketball, he also joined the Zeta Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Incorporated on December 3, 1949. In 1952, he earned his Bachelor of Science Degree from Virginia Union University Suma Cum Laude.

GRADUATE SCHOOL/MEDICAL SCHOOL

After graduating from Virginia Union University, he was unsure of how he was going to get into medical school. He did not yet have the funds to pay for medical school, so he instead applied to the University of Pennsylvania School of Physical Therapy. That was as close to the practice of medicine he thought he could get for the time being. During that same time, he was offered a place to stay at the local YMCA in West Philadelphia. In order to help pay for his stay at the YMCA, he played on their basketball team, and was the Team Captain. One of his teammates was the late great Wilt Chamberlin. It was said, Dr. King was actually better than Wilt but he wanted to pursue his dream of becoming a doctor. “After graduating, I obtained a physical therapy job at the Visiting Nurse Society.” He was the only black male in a predominately white female work environment. He was thereafter offered a position as a Physical Therapist. In 1959, he graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a degree in Physical Therapy, graduating Magna Cum Laude. Then, in 1963, he received his Doctoral degree in Osteopathic Medicine from the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine graduating Suma Cum Laude. During his tenure at PCOM, he faced a lot of prejudices and obstacles; however, he remained humble and steadfast, showing that he was a faithful child of God. In his third and fourth year of school he served as the first African-American President of the Student Council. At graduation, he was awarded the Eimerbrink Memorial Prize in Osteopathic Therapeutics and the Harold C. Waddel Memorial Prize for exceptional competence and technique in Clinical Obstetrics and Gynecology.

 

FAMILY

In between his studies, Dr. King (who was then a Physical Therapist) would soon meet the woman of his dreams. In 1957, Dr. King was asked by a friend to go out with him to meet some ladies. His friend had a set date up with Shugariah Miah but she could not attend this date by herself. So, her sister, Colletta Miah, would go with her. That’s when Dr. King fell in love at first sight with Colletta. Years later in 1962 the two would join union under God and become a married couple. Colletta would always be his greatest support. In 1964, Bill and Colletta would have their first-born child and only son, Chad Durrant King, and two years later in 1966, they would have their second child and only daughter, Miah King. Dr. King valued his family enormously- he would supply them with everything that he needed and could want. His goal was to make sure that his children received all the things that he couldn’t when he was growing up. He loved hosting events to entertain his family and friends, and everyone knew that he was the life of the party, before he turned his life to be in the ministry. He was extremely proud that his son and daughter went to Historically Black Colleges and Universities to receive their post-secondary education, just as he did. It was there that Dr. King learned that success is not obtained without moments of failure, and failure is part of the learning process.

MEDICAL PRACTICE

Although he was a physician, Dr. King encountered a great deal of hostility and prejudice from some in the community. Despite this, in 1964, Dr. King opened his own medical practice in Woodbury, New Jersey. During this time, he provided care for not only patients in his private practice, but also patients at Metropolitan Hospital in Philadelphia and Cherry Hill Hospital. At the time, he was denied staff privileges at then Underwood Memorial Hospital (now Inspira Medical Center) and was therefore not allowed to practice there. He was told that they were a small hospital and had a full staff of physicians; yet, they continued to add staff members. That same hospital later applied for the Hill Burton Funds to expand the obstetrics/nursery. The NAACP however, objected because of the denial of staff privileges to Dr. King. “The government official said that if I wasn’t accepted on staff and granted full privileges, then Underwood would not get the funds for expansion”, said Dr. King. With the support of the community, he became the first African-American Physician to obtain staff privileges at Underwood-Memorial Hospital. As a result of his commitment to patients, outstanding professional skills, and leadership qualities, he was appointed Chairman of the Department of Family Practice and Director of the Family Residency Program in 1988. Dr. King also held several hospital appointments at John F. Kennedy Memorial Hospital, UMC, Cherry Hill, Stratford and Washington Township Divisions.

MILITARY

In 1977, Dr. King was commissioned as a Major in the United States Air Force. A year into his commission, Dr. King was faced with one of North America’s worst historical events- the Jonestown massacre. In 1978, Jim Jones compelled over 900 people in Jonestown, Guyana, to drink cyanide-poisoned kool-aid. They were all killed in the event, and the bodies had to be shipped back to the United States. The closet suitable military base was the Dover Air Force Base in Dover, Delaware, where Dr. King was stationed at the time. He was one of the few African-American Doctors that had to identify the disfigured bodies. As an outstanding officer, he went on to earn the rank of Lieutenant Colonel in 1977 and in 1980, was promoted again to Colonel, holding the position of Commander of the 514th Medical Air Wing (MAC). His impact on Mission Accomplishment was noted as “Unsurpassed performance as the Wing Chief Surgeon.” In retirement he was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal, his second Oak Leaf Cluster.

MINISTRY

While serving in the Military, he began his Theological Studies, becoming an ordained Pastor in 1988 and Senior Pastor of Living Word Bible Fellowship Church in Blackwood, New Jersey. His dedication to his his patients was rivaled only by that of his family and his Church. As pastor and teacher, his dedication to teaching God’s Word led to his strong conviction in “making disciples to make a difference”, 2 Timothy 2: 1, 2.

DR. WILLIAM J. KING’S ADDITIONAL WORK

In addition to his service in Christ, medicine, and the military, Dr. King made impacts in education as well. He was appointed to the New Jersey Commission on Higher Education in 1994, and also served on the board of ECO Charter School in Camden, NJ. He also was the physician for Deptford High School for over 40 years. He further became a Police Chaplin, serving the Deptford Township Police Department, Rowan College Police Academy, Gloucester Township Police Department, and the Chief of Police Association. He readily responded to all situations, including late night crises.

Dr. King had dedicated his life to serving the Lord and his community in every capacity. He exemplified what it means to be selfless, to love, and to serve.

AWARDS, ACCOMPLISHMENTS, & APPOINTMENTS
UNIVERSITY APPOINTMENTS:

  • Clinical Assistant Professor UMDNJ-SOM Dept. of Family Practice (1981-1986)

  • Family Practice (1981-1986)

  • Family Practice Preceptor/Instructor-Family Practice Third Year Resident at Thomas Jefferson University (1985-1990’s?)

  • Clinical Assoc. Professor-UMDNJ-SOM Dept. of Family Practice (1986-1990’s?)

 

HOSPITAL APPOINTMENTS:

Kennedy Memorial Hospital UMC-Cherry Hill Stratford Washington Township Divisions (1964-1990’s?)

Underwood Memorial Hospital (1969-1990’s?)

 

HOSPITAL ADMINISTRATION APPOINTMENTS:

  • Chairman of the Department of Family Practice/Underwood Memorial (1988-1990’s?)

  • Director of Family Practices Residency Program/Underwood Memorial Hospital (1989-1990’s?)

 

OTHER PROFESSIONAL POSITIONS/MAJOR APPOINTMENTS:

  • Chief Physical Therapist-Visiting Nurses Association (1953-1959)

  • Clinical Assistant/Clinical Services-Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (1972-1974)

  • Chief Executive Medical Director-Amalgamated Meat-Cutter Union at Campbell Soup Company (1964-1966)

  • Physician to the Deptford Township School System (1970’s-2014)

  • Senior Pastor at Living Word Bible Fellowship Church (1989-2019)

 

MILITARY SERVICES:

  • Lieutenant Colonel-United States Air Force (1977-1978)

  • Chief of Primary Care-Dover Air Force Base (1978-1979)

  • Acting Chief of Internal Medicine- Dover Air Base (1979-1980)

  • Chief of Aerospace Medicine-Dover Air Base (1979-1980)

  • Lieutenant Colonel-United State Air Force Reserve Corp-McGuire Air Force Base (1980-1984)

  • Corp-McGuire Air Force Base (1980-1984)

  • Surgeon General- 514th Military Air Lift Wing-McGuire Air Force Base (1980-1984)

  • Commander- 514th Military Air Force Reserves Corps- McGuire Air Force Base (1980-1984)

  • Colonel-United State Air Force Reserve Corps-McGuire Air Force Base (1984-1900’s?)

  • Deputy Commander of Medical Resources- 514th Military Air Lift Wing (1989-1990’s?)

 

MAJOR COMMITTEE ASSIGNMENT

  • American Osteopathic Association, Department of General Practice KMH-UMC

  • New Jersey Association of Osteopathic Physician and Surgeons

  • American College of General Practitioners in Osteopathic Medicine and Surgery

  • Society of Air Force Physicians

  • Medical Executive Committee PMH-UMC

  • Mortality Review Committee-KMHUMC Washington Township Division

  • Minority Admission UMDNJ-SOM

  • Mass Casualty Disaster Committee-Underwood Memorial Hospital

  • Admissions Committee UMDNJ-SOM

  • Acting Chief of Service/Department of Family Practice-KMH-UMC Washington Township Division

  • Chairman/Department of Family Practice-Underwood Memorial Hospital

  • Director Family Practice Residency Program-Underwood Memorial Hospital

  • Attending, Center for Urban Theological-Studies-Westminster Theological Seminary Master Program

  • Instructor, Biblical Analysis-Grace Bible Institute

  • Biblical Counseling-Living Word Bible Institute

  • Christian Counseling Center

  • Gloucester County Human Relations Community Co-Chair

  • Gloucester County Sheriff’s Assistant Program

  • Physician-Deptford Township School System

  • N.J. Commission of Higher Education Chair

  • Executive Committee of Welfare Investment Board

  • Physician-Delaware Special Olympics Inc.

  • Chairperson-Tri-County Heart Association Heart Fund

  • Physician-Sickle Cell Screening Program, Gloucester County, New Jersey

  • Chairperson Deptford Township Juvenile Conference Committee

 

AWARDS

  • The John H. Eimberbrink, D.O-1963

  • Memorial Prize in Osteopathic (PCOM)

  • The Harold C. Waddel, D.O

  • Memorial Award for Exceptional Competence in Techniques in Clinical Obstetrics and Gynecology

  • The Meritorious Service Medal for Outstanding Meritorious Service Medal for Outstanding Meritorious Services (President of the United States/Department Air Forces.)-1977-1980

  • Commander Outstanding Unit Award United States Air Force Reserves- 1983

  • Dedicated Service Award in Support of the UNCF (Philadelphia International Alumni Council of the United Negro College Fund, Inc.)-1985

  • Court of Appointment-Juvenile & Domestic Relations Court Gloucester County. New Jersey-1979

  • Count of Appreciation-The Family Reunion Time Event/Underwood Memorial Hospital-2008

  • Distinguished Soc Award-Dept. Township HS Football Booster Club-2017

  • Court of Special Recovery-Department of Township Board of Education-2015

  • Court of Appreciation-Heart Fund-1970

  • Court of Ordination-Christian Church-1988

  • Court of Recognition-Stephen Smith Geriatire Center-1973

  • Court of Commendation-Gloucester County Board of Chosen Freeholders-2018

  • Joint Legislative Resolution-State of New Jersey-Senate & General Assembly-2017

  • Plaque of Appreciation-Department Township Mayor & Council-Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Annual Celebration- x6

  • Honored by Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. Upsilon Delta Omega Chapter 2004 Salute to African-American Men

  • Plaque of Appreciation-Gloucester County Branch-NAACP-1967

  • Plaque of Recovery-The Elks Workers of Pennsylvania-1956

  • Community Service Award Plaque-L Agarus Mission Ime & RAFHA Inc.

  • Family Empowerment Day-2009

  • Plaque for Outstanding Service- NJ Deputies Conference-1966

  • Plaque in Recovery of Outstanding Contributions- DeHugs Commissary No2 Valley of Camden, NJ

  • Plaque in Celebration of Induction into the PABSC Hall of Fame-2018

  • Plaque-1st Inductee to Legacy Park- Department Township Gloucester County-2018

  • Court of Appreciation-City of Woodbury

  • Proclamation-Gloucester County. Board of Chosen Freeholders 2015 Woodbury Juneteenth Comm. Service Award

  • Letter of Congratulations- Deptford Township Board of Education Resolution- New General Assembly-2011

  • Citizen of the Month-Deptford Township

  • Proclamation-Gloucester County. Board of Chosen Freeholders-2017

  • Plaque of Recognition Gloucester Township-Black History Month for Outstanding Community Service -2011

  • Joint Leg. Commendation (Family Practice Building Dedication) State of NJ-Senate and General Assembly-2014