Fans got a chance to pay their respects to Dave Williams, singer for DROWNING POOL, at a public funeral service yesterday (Sunday, August 18th) at the Plano Center in Plano, Texas. A smaller, more private viewing was also held for friends and family on Saturday evening from 6-9 PM Central Time.
According to one of the people present at the viewing, Jeff Herbert of Madden Syndrome, "[Williams' DROWNING POOL bandmates] Stevie [Benton, bass], CJ [Pierce, guitars], and Mike [Luce, drums] are holding up as well as can be expected. A very somber occasion, for sure.
"They had Dave done up right. He was wearing a PANTERA T-shirt, and the [DROWNING POOL] logo was engraved in the top of the casket. The logo was also embroidered on the inside of the lid. I cannot express how sad I was to see the remaining members. It was almost worse seeing the looks on all of their faces than to see Dave lying there."
"The first two speakers were friends of the family," Herbert stated about yesterday's services. "The third speaker was Dave's uncle. He was by far the most energetic speaker of them all. He had us all laughing and crying as he remembered different events in Dave's life. He received a standing ovation at the end of his talk.
"There was a short musical break with CELINE DION's 'Because You Loved Me' and the Titanic theme.
"Next up was the Chairman of Wind-up Records. He spoke a little about rock'n'roll. He also said that a 'Tribute' DVD will soon be released and that the first $250,000 would be used to build Dave's parents a new house, as this was one of Dave's dreams.
"The CEO and President of Wind-Up Records also spoke, and he had us all in tears, mostly because he was in tears. Several other friends and family spoke.
"CJ, Stevie, and Mike also said a few short words. At the end they asked if the people attending could stand up and cheer for Dave like they were at Ozzfest one last time... The place went completely nuts.
"The final speakers were a couple of high school friends. They had put together a 10-minute video with old snapshots and video clips of Dave ranging from 6 months old to earlier this year. It was very moving.
"As they carried Dave out, they were playing someone's voice mail messages over the PA from August 14th. This was the hardest part. Hearing the voices of so many people calling to say: 'I'm so sorry, I just heard'..."