Dr. Selden T. Williams, the senior physician at Attica Correctional Facility during the 1971 riot, died Tuesday (Sept. 29, 1998) in Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester. He was 78.
Williams, a physician for 45 years, was on staff of St. Jerome and Genesee Memorial hospitals in Batavia, in addition to his private practice. He retired in 1992.
During the Attica riot, Williams treated "close to a hundred" people for gunshot wounds, according to The Buffalo News at the time. When he returned home, "he sat down and cried about the inhumanity of it all," his wife told The News.
Williams received some criticism from inmates in the wake of the riot and, in 1972, resigned from the post he had held since 1947.
A Brooklyn native, Williams graduated from St. Lawrence University and New York Medical College in New York City.
He was a board member of Batavia Hospice, a member and past master of the Attica Masonic Lodge, a past member of the Wyoming County Board of Health and an elder at Attica First Presbyterian Church. The World War II Army veteran was a member of the Harder-O'Donnell Post 734, American Legion.
Survivors include his wife, the former Louise Carlson; a son, Frank of Hickory, N.C.; three daughters, Ellen of Rochester, Susan Bottone of Warsaw and Pamela Senick; two sisters, Constance Green of Hot Springs, Ark., and Eleanor Kolkebeck of Washington, D.C.; and six grandchildren.
A Masonic service will be held at 7:30 p.m. Friday in Marley Funeral Home, 135 Main St. A funeral service will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday in Attica First Presbyterian Church, Main and Prospect streets. Burial will be in Forest Hill Cemetery.[epltz]