One Pocket Hall of Fame legend Bill Staton died Saturday, February 18th, 2006 at the age of 77. He had suffered a couple of strokes recently. An extremely popular and well-respected player, for years Bill was one of the premier gentleman gamblers of pocket billiards. He was inducted in the first class of the One Pocket Hall of Fame.
William (Bill) Staton, 77, long time resident of Myrtle Beach, died Saturday, February 18, 2006 at Grand Strand Regional Hospital. Born in Concord, NC to the late Bertha and Dexter Staton. Bill, also known as “Weenie Beenie”, was a world renowned pool player, winning tournaments including the World’s Championship One Pocket tournament, the Virginia State Pool Championship five times, and numerous other tournaments. He won the Stardust Open One Pocket Champion in Las Vegas, and played all the World’s Greats in pool. Bill was an inaugural member of the One Pocket Hall of Fame. His full interview given last year is available at OnePocket.Org.
He started Jack & Jill Cue Clubs, family oriented pool establishments. He was ahead of his time. One of them operated 24 hours a day in Arlington, Va. for 14 years until Weenie retired to Myrtle Beach, SC in 1981. At the Jack & Jill, he started the U.S. Open Pool Tournament, and hosted numerous well attended pool and billiard tournaments over the years.
He was a sports commentator for ABC Wide World of Sports, ESPN and AMF. He traveled extensively and loved attending pool and sporting events around the world. Most recently he commentated for the Japan Open.
He performed the trick shots in several well known movies including “The Color of Money”, and gave “Minnesota Fats” his name.
With an artful repertoire of trick shots, he made many guest appearances on TV shows such as The Tonight Show, The Mike Douglas Show, The David Frost Show and Steve Allen’s “I’ve Got a Secret”. His secret was he could sink all the balls on the table with one shot. That was quite a feat in the early 1960s.
He traveled with the USO and the AMF Staff of Champions giving pool exhibitions to our armed forces and audiences throughout the world.
He earned his nickname “Weenie Beenie” from the chain of hot dog stands he and his brother started in Northern Virginia, which still operate over 50 years later.
Weenie Beenie was an avid golfer and played with Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicholas. He moved to Myrtle Beach after falling in love with the “Golf Capital of the World.”
He is survived by his beloved wife of 52 years, Norma Jean Staton; their three children: Gwyn Staton of Seattle, WA, Victoria Ishee of Atlanta, GA, and Scott Staton of Richmond, VA; four grandchildren; and four sisters: Mildred Stiller of Greensboro, NC, Margaret Brown and Hazel Peurifoy of Concord, NC and Margie Coakley of Temperance, MI.
Relatives and friends of the family are invited to attend funeral services on Thursday, February 23, 2006 at 1:00 pm at McMillan-Small Funeral Home. The burial will follow the service at Ocean Woods Cemetery, SC.
The family will receive friends from 5:30 – 7 PM on Wednesday, February 22nd at McMillan-Small Funeral Home, 67th Avenue N. and the Highway 17 Bypass, Myrtle Beach, SC.
Memorials may be made in his name to:
Higher Education Fund
Epworth Children’s Home
PO Box 50466
Columbia, SC 29250
or online at www.epworthchildrenshome.org
Obituary provided by Gwyn StatonComplete Bill Staton Interview Hear the Beenie Weenie song that played at Bill’s HOF Induction