William Parks, a renowned barbecuer in El Paso, Texas, died on June 23. Cause of death was not released. He was 78.
The North Carolina native’s grandmother taught him how to cook. He served in the U.S. Army, and retired in 1963 as a master sergeant. After moving to El Paso and working for Southwest Airlines, Parks decided to enter the barbecue business.
Bill Parks Bar-B-Q was known for its friendly atmosphere and tasty home-cooked menu. For more than three decades, Parks earned rave reviews from customers and critics alike for his mesquite-pecan-and-oak-smoked pork and beef, southern vegetables, apple cobbler, banana pudding and sweet potato pie. The landmark eatery was named one of the 50 best barbecue joints in the state by Texas Monthly Magazine. It closed a few years ago when Parks retired.