William "Bill" Hallberg, author of several books and longtime professor of English at East Carolina University, died of cancer on May 23 in his home in Asheville. He was 67.
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His novel, The Rub of the Green, concerned golf and was published by Doubleday in 1988. The New York Times Book Review called it "a story to be enjoyed by non-golfers and savored by those who love the game." A memoir, The Soul of Golf, followed in 1997. He also edited Perfect Lies, an anthology of golf stories by John Updike, Walker Percy, and others.
Hallberg was born on January 20, 1947, in Ann Arbor, Mich., and grew up in Bowling Green, in northwestern Ohio. He attended Miami University in Ohio as an undergraduate. He subsequently earned a degree from Bowling Green State University's Master's of Fine Arts program.
His first professorship was at Louisiana State University. In 1980, he moved to Greenville, to become an associate professor at ECU. During his 30-year tenure there, he chaired the Sigma Tau Delta honors society, while publishing short stories and essays in venues including Ploughshares, The Southern Review, and Golf.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Carl and Jane Hallberg; and a sister, Julie Hallberg.
He is survived by his wife, Christy Alexander Hallberg of the home; son, Garth Risk Hallberg, of Brooklyn, N.Y.; daughter, Rachel Coley of Charlotte; sister, Lynn Hall of West Olive, Mich.; and two grandsons, Amos and Walter Hallberg, of Brooklyn, N.Y.
A memorial service will be held in room 1032 of the Bate Building on the ECU campus at 7 p.m. Thursday, June 5, 2014. A life celebration gathering will be held at the home of Bill and Christy Hallberg in Asheville at 7 p.m. Saturday, June 21, 2014. Please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about the June 21 gathering.
Published in The Daily Reflector on May 28, 2014