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William Blake

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William F. Blake

William Francis Blake, 67, artist and beloved husband, son, brother, step-father, grandfather, colleague and friend died in his home late Thursday evening after a long illness.Will was born in Pittsfield, lived in Lanesboro as a young boy and spent his formative years in Virginia. He returned with his family to Pittsfield as a teen, graduating from Pittsfield High School in 1966. Will was a Vietnam era Army veteran stationed in Germany during the Cold War until 1969. He graduated from Berkshire Community College and UMass Amherst where he earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in painting. Will was a muralist for the city of Pittsfield; starting with his participation in the Vietnam Veterans "Least We Forget" mural and continuing through the creation of the "Dedicate to those Who Serve", "To Serve and Protect" and "Transitions:100th Anniversary of the Boys and Girls Club" murals. He was employed as a Watermark Artist at Crane in Dalton, MA specializing in the development of many of the watermarks found in US currency and passport paper. Will was an avid racquetball player, bicyclist and runner. He loved cooking, a great glass of red wine, an intriguing espionage novel, Cape Cod (North Truro beaches especially) and telling tall tales at his many dinner parties. Will is survived by his wife of 19 years, Karen Spies, his mother, Ann Blake, sister Chris Blake, brothers Dennis and Jeffery Blake, step-son Erik Senseney and wife Katherine, step-daughter Heather Mellor and husband Jim, granddaughter Lillie Senseney, grandson Emanuel Mellor as well as his many treasured nieces, nephews, their children and cherished friends. A memorial celebration will be held Saturday, November 9th. Please contact Will's family for details. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in Will's memory to the Massachusetts Audubon Society for the care and preservation of the Wellfleet Sanctuary. BIRCHES-ROY FUNERAL HOME is in charge of arrangements. Condolences may be made through birchesroyfuneralservice.com.
Published in The Berkshire Eagle on Nov. 4, 2013
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