William Doman "Bill" Wells

  • "There is no "before Bill Wells" for me. I can remember him..."
    - Kathy Ostermeyer
  • "What a pleasure it was to have known Mr. Wells. He always..."
    - Linda Thompson
  • "May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow."
  • "Bill was one of the most vital and gentlemanly men I have..."
    - Kristin Keller
  • "I had the pleasure of meeting Bill Wells approximately 15..."
    - Tony Bonacuse

William Doman "Bill" Wells

87, Fishers, IN, reached the conclusion of his long and very full life on Saturday evening, May 3, 2014, shortly after watching the Pacers victory winning the first round of the NBA Playoffs. He peacefully left this world at his home with family by his side. It had been a beautiful warm spring day and he was able to go outside under the blue sky with spring bursting all around. He even celebrated with a few sips of crisp white wine after which he remarked "Oh Boy!". His mind was sharp until the very end allowing for many remembrances with family and friends who were able to visit in his final days.

Bill was born in Indianapolis, IN on September 11, 1926 to Harold Hunter Wells of Columbus, IN, and Rose Marie Doman Wells of Mitchell, IN. He graduated from Shortridge High School in 1944. He enlisted in the Navy and served in the Pacific in WWII. He was definitely a member of "The Greatest Generation" and exhibited its qualities throughout his life. Upon returning from the Pacific, he attended and graduated from Indiana University in 1949, majoring in Insurance. There, he met the love of his life, Carolyn Shanafelt, and they married on August 21, 1948 in South Bend, IN, her hometown.

They lived in the Indianapolis area their entire 61 years of married life together. They shared their most treasured pastime of all, being with Family and going on vacations together, as well as a love for boating as they built and moved into the first home built on Geist Reservoir in 1975. They enjoyed traveling to interesting places around the world, being with their many friends, and volunteering. For 30 years they spent winters in Sanibel Island, FL at their home with their boat parked behind and their friends close by. They also loved ANYTHING IU.

Upon graduating from IU, Bill entered the insurance business by joining Wells & Company, Inc., an Insurance Agency started by his father in 1941. During his career he was instrumental in converting it from a wholesale insurance Broker into a Retailer in the mid 1960s and guiding it to become one of the largest Insurance Brokerage firms in the State of Indiana with over 100 associates. He loved the insurance business because he loved serving people and working to be the best he could be in his chosen profession. He enjoyed doing something 'first' through innovation. Wells & Company was noted in the industry for being innovative.

He was a devoted father, grandfather and great-grandfather, never missing a chance to call any of his offspring or attend one of their events. He was of the 'old school' who believed in doing things right (or don't do it) and having the sense of discipline & duty in living your life right. At the same time, he was known and admired for his smile and positive personality. He liked people who were 'do-ers' and were 'upbeat'.

Bill was a member of Holy Spirit at Geist Catholic Church and Sigma Nu Fraternity where he received the Herman B Wells Award for loyalty and service. He also served as President of the IU Kelley School of Business Alumni Board, which was instrumental during his term in bringing the IU Business Conference to Indianapolis from Bloomington, and served in 1975 as Chairman of the IU Varsity Club - its first National Board. In addition, he also was an active member of the IU President's Council under Tom Erlich, and served as President or Chair of several National Insurance Company Advisory Boards within the Insurance Industry.

Bill was a devout Catholic and was active in every Church Parish where he was a member - usually serving in a Development role. He also was a member of the IU Presidents Circle, The Arbutus Society, the Well House Society, the Hoosier Hundred, and the 1820 Society. He was never afraid to get involved to get things done, and do any task, and for that reason; he received a Sagamore of the Wabash from Governor Evan Bayh in 1996. Other memberships he participated in were the Meridian and Hillcrest Country Clubs, the Columbia Club, the Indianapolis Athletic Club, US Power

Squadron, and the "Bridge Club".

Bill was preceded in death by his wife Carolyn in 2010, and by his older sister, Jacqueline Wells Olson, of Cincinnati, OH. He is survived by their four sons, Mike (Sue) Wells, Brad Wells, Scott Wells and Steve (Mary) Wells; his five Grandchildren, Jeff (Jona) Wells, Brian (Amy) Wells, Lesley Wells, Allison Wells, and Cara Wells; and his five Great Grandchildren, Kaitlyn, Dylan, Helena, Henry, and Conor. Dad, Granddad and Great Granddad will be greatly missed by all.

The entire Wells family wishes to thank the Caregivers who were instrumental in providing a very positive quality of life over the last two years, especially Angie McGee, his primary daily Caregiver, and Tim Story, his personal Physician. Nursefinders of Indiana also provided unparalleled service as his life approached its end. Thank You Cristina, Tyra, Robert and Cynthia, as well as Tom his Physical Therapist. The unsung heroes at IU Heath North and Seton Specialty Hospital are also due our thanks for helping him get home to finish out his life on earth, especially Dr Bill Harvey and ALL the Nurses, Assistants and Aids.

Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated by Father Phil Bower on Saturday, May 17, 2014 at 12:00 Noon in Holy Spirit @ Geist Catholic Church, 10350 Glaser Way, Fishers, IN 46037.

Visitation will precede the service from 10:30 until Noon, and a luncheon/reception with continued visitation will follow the Mass. Burial will be private.

NOTE - the Geist Mini Marathon will be held that morning and some roads in the area will be restricted or closed. Suggested route to get to Holy Spirit @ Geist Church is go East from I-69 on 116th St to Brooks School Rd and go South to Fall Creek Rd. Then, turn right (West) and take Fall Creek Rd to the entrance of Holy Spirit @ Geist.

You are invited to visit the website http://www.leppertmortuary.com where you may share a personal memory of Bill, or sign the guest book. Memorial contributions in Bill's name may be made to IU Foundation, Goodwill Industries of Central Indiana, or Wounded Warriors. Arrangements: Leppert Mortuary.

Published in the The Indianapolis Star from May 11 to May 15, 2014
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