Obituary Listings

Melvin Potier

November 18, 1949 March 14, 2018
Melvin Potier
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Obituary for Melvin Potier

On March 14, 2018, Melvin Thomas Potier died peacefully after surviving a decade with severe lung disease. Mel was born on November 18, 1949 to Anna Potier in Pineville, Kentucky. He spent his childhood in the care of his grandparents, Perry Smith and Rose Welch. Mel was deeply nostalgic of his boyhood with his grandparents at Black Star Coal Camp in Alva, KY and his time in Pineville, KY. Mel spent his childhood getting into trouble with his friends, dreaming of fast cars and enjoying the outdoors.
After graduating from Pineville High School, Mel married Malinda Simms and together had James Potier. Mel served in the Navy from 1971 to 1977, and achieved the rank of Quartermaster 2nd Petty Officer. In 1983, he married Janice Campbell and had two children, Amye and Ross. He sold insurance at the time, but decided he enjoyed better the satisfaction of fixing things. After spending a couple of years in Texas, Mel returned to Williamsburg in 1990 and became a maintenance supervisor with the Williamsburg Housing Authority, where he remained until his retirement in 2015. He enjoyed his work and felt that he was particularly suited to being in charge.
Like his mother, Mel was an excellent cook who was particularly skilled at preparing southern dishes. Mel also loved trading. He would trade anything, from cars to horses, and enjoyed it so much that he rarely kept anything very long. In his retirement, Mel took much comfort in television and music, with tastes ranging from alternative rock to bluegrass. More than just enjoying television, he admired it, saying that television had done more to open people's minds than anything else.
He loved Williamsburg and its people, whom he frequently referred to as the salt of the earth. His wish was to die in Kentucky at home. He said it would be a travesty for him to die outside of Kentucky; that his soul would never find peace. Thankfully, he can now rest.
Mel may be remembered most of all for his boundless wit and charm. He always challenged the people around him, testing them with his sarcastic humor, left-wing politics, and general irreverence. He never felt the need to comply with the expectations of others, and to the very end he lived as the master of his own life. In keeping with his nature to go against the grain, Mel decided against having a funeral service. But no matter, Mel's many friends and loved ones will never forget him. In lieu of flowers, Mel wanted donations made to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Family is planning a memorial in the Spring. Condolences and memories may be sent to Amye Lewis, PO box 71 Emlyn, KY 40730 or

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