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William GONSER Obituary
William Gonser Resident of Lafayette William Lease Gonser, age 79, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, January 19. The son of William and Alice (Lease) Gonser, Bill was born May 7, 1931, in Great Falls, Montana. His family moved to Berkeley when he was six, and he remained in the Bay Area for the rest of his life. He was a graduate of Berkeley High School, Stanford University, and University of California, Berkeley, Boalt School of Law. After graduating from Stanford, Bill spent three years in the Army, stationed in Japan. Following his graduation from Boalt in 1958, he embarked on a long and successful law career: first in Sacramento where he served as Assistant Attorney General, followed by private practices in Berkeley, Walnut Creek and Lafayette. Bill shared 52 years of life with Carol Norton Gonser, with whom he was united in marriage on August 16, 1958. Together they raised three children: Barbee, Bill and Bob. Bill and Carol celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in 2008 on an Alaskan cruise with their family. Bill was a devoted father and grandfather, and a vital member of his community, where he lived for 45 years. He was active in the LMYA swim and basketball programs, and was a member of the Lafayette School Board, where he served as president for several terms. He was a long-time member of Orinda Country Club, where he also served as president. He loved all sports and games of chance, and was particularly fond of golf and traveling. He will be deeply missed by his family and friends. Bill was preceded in death by his daughter, Barbara (Barbee) Gonser Bozzini. He is survived by his wife, Carol; his brother Thomas Gonser and his wife, Stephanie Gonser of Bend, Oregon; brother-in-law Walter Norton of San Marino; two sons and their spouses: William Norton Gonser and his wife, Mary Ann Gonser of Green Valley, and Robert Lease Gonser and his wife, Patty Gonser of Lafayette; his son-in-law Ken Bozzini and his wife, Kit Bozzini-Lukins of Lafayette; and 13 grandchildren: Peter, Sean, Randy, Caroline, Julianne, Krissy, Corinne, and Tara Bozzini-Lukins of Lafayette, John, Jenny and Chris Gonser of Lafayette, and Amy and Will Gonser of Green Valley. A celebration of Bill's life will be held at 3pm on Tuesday, January 25 at Orinda Country Club, 315 Camino Sobrante in Orinda. Memorial contributions may be made to the charity of your choice or one of the following: Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF); 26 Broadway, 14th floor, New York, NY 10004; University of California Berkeley, Women's Golf or Aquatic programs, University of California Berkeley, 195 Haas Pavilion, Berkeley, CA 94720-442; or the Stanford University athletic program of your choice, Gift Processing, P.O. Box 20466, Stanford, CA 94309. Please include, "in the memory of William L. Gonser" with any donation.
Published in Contra Costa Times from Jan. 22 to Jan. 24, 2011
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