William Somerset, 78, beloved son of the late George and Marie (Volkman) Somerset, and devoted husband of Brenda (Tedford) Somerset, departed this life on May 22, 2013 after a long illness with heart disease. He was a long time resident of Andover, CT. Born in Elmhurst, NY on Sept. 15, 1934, Bill joined the United States Air Force upon completion of high school and served during the Korean War. He was a graduate of New York University School of Engineering/Physics and took some post graduate courses at Renssalaer. Hired by Pratt and Whitney Aircraft as an experimental test engineer, Bill moved to Connecticut in 1961 and resided in Vernon before moving to Andover in 1975. In 1991 he retired from Pratt and Whitney as Supervisor of Production Test Cell Engineering and Data Systems, Manufacturing Division. Bill was an avid gardener and an accomplished woodworker. However, he mostly relished the title of "Mr. Fix-it" and performed many miracles with a paper clip, a coat hanger and duct tape. A voracious reader, Bill was a life-long learner and lover of history and science, with a special passion for astronomy. He also enjoyed a good science fiction thriller, and never missed viewing a New York Giants or New England Patriots football game. Before his illness, a game of golf or tennis was high on his list of recreational pursuits. Bill is survived and lovingly remembered by his wife, son, and two daughters, Todd Somerset and his wife Sandy of Maine, Jamie Lindley and her husband Steve of Hebron, and Carolyn Wilkins and her husband John of Florida. He also leaves wonderful grandchildren who affectionately called him "Grumpy", Ashley and Christopher Somerset, Taylor and Ryan Lindley, Kara Wilkins, and Jason DeFreitas and his wife Leigh. Jason and Leigh gave Bill two handsome great- grandsons, David and JJ DeFreitas. He is also survived by a sister, Miriam Truhan of North Carolina; two sisters-in-law, Jean Brooks of Arizona and Joan Tedford of Manchester, and eleven nieces and nephews. Bill was pre-deceased by his brother and sister-in law, George and Joan Somerset. In addition to friends and family members, Bill will be missed by countless numbers of "feathered friends" he so diligently fed over the years, and by two devoted canines, Willow and Onyx. The family would like to thank doctors Michael Sharon, Hiroshima Takata, and Faustinus Onyirimba, for the excellent care they have given Bill. Special thanks are extended to Jean, Dawn, Nicole, Kristen, and Alicia. Accolades to the Andover Volunteer Fire Department Emergency Medical Services and to the 911 dispatchers for their incredible life saving expertise and prompt assistance.
Honoring Bill's request, there will be no calling hours or memorial service. Burial will be private at the convenience of the family. Holmes Funeral Home of Manchester has care of arrangements. For online condolences please visit www.holmes-watkinsfuneralhomes.com. Donations in Bill's memory may be sent to the Andover Fire Department, 11 School St., Andover, CT 06232 or to a