Former County Commissioner John Willingham Dies

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(Memphis) Former Shelby County Commissioner and world-famous BBQ champ John Willingham has died.

His daughter tells us he died of heart failure.

Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell released a statement saying,

“Commissioner Willingham faithfully served the citizens of Shelby County. His dedication to our community was evident.

Even after his retirement from the Shelby County Commission, he continued to think of new ways to improve the quality of life for citizens and was always a friend to those of us serving in government roles.”

Willingham’s and his team won two Grand Champion titles at the Memphis in May B-B-Q contest and two titles at the Kansas City Royal contest.

He also opened several B-B-Q restaurants around Memphis during his career.