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WILLIAM CHARLES "BILL" BECKERT

BECKERT, William Charles "Bill" Of Sarasota, Florida; formerly of Swampscott and Marblehead, MA; age 94, beloved husband, father, and grandfather, died on May 4, 2013 after a brief illness. Bill grew up in Pennsylvania and New Jersey and graduated from Harvard University in 1940. Immediately after graduation he became a Marine, serving during World War II in the Third Battalion, Eighth Marines, Second Marine Division. He fought in Saipan, Tinian and Okinawa. After the war, he worked at General Electric Company in Lynn, MA. while attending night school at Boston College for his law degree. During this time, he met the love of his life, Jean Wiggin, and they married on March 27, 1948. The couple moved to Swampscott, MA, where they had two children. Bill worked for over 30 years at General Electric as a self-taught mechanical engineer. Bill was a devoted father, spending much of his free time on family outings and events. He took his children on many vacations, including to Bermuda, Jamaica, Europe, and St. Croix, and they enjoyed many weekend outings of camping and skiing. In a compromise to his children, he bought a power boat, but when his children grew, he bought his true love: a sloop. He enjoyed sailing and showing off the coast to friends and got great pleasure from his annual trip to the coast of Maine. He had a wide circle of friends with whom he loved to play golf and bridge. He was a longtime member of the Tedesco Country Club in Swampscott and Eastern Yacht Club in Marblehead. Bill was also a self-taught woodworker, and after retirement he took up fine cabinetmaking and wood sculpting. Among those who loved him, he was known for his generous spirit, a wonderfully sharp sense of humor, his open-mindedness, and his loving and supportive nature. He is survived by his son, Arthur Wiggin Beckert, Arthur's wife, Betsy Haas-Beckert, their children, Rachael, Molly, and Spencer; and by his daughter, Ann Beckert, and Ann's daughter Galen. There will be a service at Plymouth Harbor in Sarasota this summer. Donations in Bill's honor may be made to Echoing Good, a non-profit founded by his grandaughter Molly that supports sustainable projects around the world. (Echoing Good, 263 Cleveland Ave, Mill Valley, CA 94941 or http://echoinggood.org).
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Published in The Boston Globe on May 12, 2013
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