On March 1, 2023, Mr. Ronald "Big Hawgh" Wayne Hamilton of Merigold, MS, age 69, passed peacefully with family by his side.
Ronnie was a character unlike any other. His love, appreciation, and talent for art, cooking, story-telling, and family is what defined his life. His art is displayed all over the country in homes of friends and loved ones as well as in a few Mississippi museums. His ability to cook for a crowd and entertain them in the process is widely known across the Delta. When he placed in Memphis in May in the whole hog cooking competition, his pride beamed as he walked along the river carrying that huge trophy. He achieved a dream when he opened the Cotton Factor Bar & Grill. It was not for long, but his whole heart was in it and he enjoyed every minute. His unique ability for design was evident in that restaurant as well as his love for cooking and building a menu and hosting a multitude of parties for the people he loved. Absolutely no one could tell a story like him. He could write an eloquent story and paint a literal picture in your mind of the location and people. His career path spanned many years in the catfish industry followed by fulfilling his dream of owning his restaurant and catering countless events with world winning barbeque, delicious appetizers, and some of the best desserts you ever tasted.
Ronnie is preceded in death by his parents Frank S. Hamilton and Bertha Mae "Woody" Hamilton and brother Frank “Pepper” Hamilton. He is survived by son, Whit Hamilton, daughter, Chrissi Papworth and husband Tom; grandchildren Will and Natalie; brother Kerry Hamilton and sister Sheilah Pantin; brothers in-law Lucius Lamar and Bob Pantin; former wife and lifelong friend Joan Hamilton; and many loved nieces, nephews, and grand nieces and grand nephews.
Pall bearers will be Cliff Thach, Johnny Lee Toy, Leroy Hampton, Tyrone Richardson, Harry Roland, Mims Wilson, Steve Kelley, Kenny Jenkins, Rob Pantin, Hayden Hamilton, Dale Morris, and Shane Hamilton.
Graveside services will be at Lehrton Cemetery in Ruleville, Mississippi on Saturday, March 4, 2023 at 10:00 a.m. A “Homegoing” Celebration will be held that same day at 1:00 p.m. at Locus Benedictus Retreat Center in Greenwood, MS. This will be a covered dish celebration like the Schlater Methodist Church homecomings that he loved to attend. Drinks will be provided.
Memorials may be made to American Cancer Society- Hope Lodge of Jackson, Mississippi.
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