Born August 23, 1925, in Akron Ohio, Bill grew up in a family of 10 as part of “The Greatest Generation.” Of Welch and French ancestry, he spent many summers on his French-speaking maternal grandparents’ farm in Sterling, met his future wife Kathy while tending the soda fountain at Harsha’s Drugstore in Akron, and joined the Army after graduation. He served as a medic with the 4th Infantry Division in Europe, won the Bronze Star at the Battle of the Bulge, and came home and married Kathleen McCauley in 1946. He and Kathy raised two daughters, Judy and Laurie, in Tallmadge. Bill was an avid vegetable gardener and handyman. He served as an active member of the First Congregational Church of Akron, where he and Kathy married, their daughters were married, and two granddaughters were christened. Bill served as a dedicated volunteer well into his 80’s at the Food Pantry at First Church. He was volunteering for Habitat for Humanity on his 80th birthday. Earlier, Bill volunteered at the Summit County Children’s Home, Soap Box Derby, and as a member of Kiwanis. He worked for BF Goodrich Chemical for 33 years.
Bill and Kathy traveled widely through Europe and Asia with friends and family. Although reticent to discuss his war years, in later life he accepted invitations to speak about his experiences to local veteran organizations. In 2004, Bill attended the dedication of the WWII Memorial festivities in Washington, including a reception at the White House as a guest of President George Bush. Kathy passed away in 2008 after a long fight with Alzheimer’s, and Bill moved to Virginia to be close to his family in Leesburg and the Washington area. After prolonged health challenges, Bill died on June 8. The family owes an endless debt of gratitude to the selfless and dedicated healthcare workers that eased Bill’s way without his family present due to the Covid-19 pandemic. They cared for him with compassion, kindness and tenderness. Bill was preceded in death by his parents, Dwight and Cecilia Williams; and his siblings Virginia, Richard, Rosemary, Gerald, Annabel, and Janice. He is survived by his sister, Edna Dearmitt (Jack); his daughters, Judy Robinson (David), and Laurie McCord (Scott); his granddaughters, Hadley Sorenson (Eric) and Kelly Masley (Joshua); and greatgrandchildren, McCauley, Foster, Caden and Bryce. Precautionary measures taken due to COVID-19 prevent the family from scheduling a memorial service at this time. Family and friends will be notified when such a service will be held. In remembrance of Bill, donations may be made in his name to the First Congregational Church of Akron Food Pantry, 292 E. Market Street, Akron, OH 44313, or to Habitat for Humanity.