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William Williams


1930 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
William Williams Obituary
On Monday, January 23, 2017, William (Bill) Vincent Williams, of Estes Park, Colorado passed away at home after a long illness, surrounded by his loving family. Bill was born on June 15, 1930 and raised in Chicago, IL, the son of Anne (Weber) Williams and Vincent Albert Williams. After the death of his mother at the age of three, he and his brother spent much of their childhood during the Great Depression and Second World War living in Lawrence Hall, a home for boys from broken families in Chicago. He made lifetime friendships, and often shared many happy memories of his time there, telling stories of pranks and summer adventures at Camp Hardy, Wisconsin. After graduation from Lane Tech High School in Chicago, he earned an Associates Degree from Wright Jr. College, Chicago, IL. He joined the Naval Reserve in 1951, serving until his discharge in 1963. Bill attended Cornell College, in Mount Vernon, Iowa on an academic scholarship, and earned a bachelor's degree in Economics in 1954. At Cornell, Bill swam on the swim team, was a trainer for the football team, and was a member of Beta Omicron Fraternity (known as the Owls). It was in his first semester at Cornell that he met the woman that he always referred to as the love of his life, Beryle (Bea) Wood. They married in Bea's hometown of Nora Springs, IA on September 6, 1953. After graduation they moved to Colorado to start their new life together. He began working as an accountant for Standard Oil in Denver until beginning graduate school at the University of Colorado, Boulder, where he was awarded a Ph.D. in Economics in 1961. Bill and Bea began their family in Boulder, and moved to St. Paul, MN when he was offered a position on the faculty of the Department of Economics at Hamline University. He rose to become the William Kahlert Chair of Economics, and remained on the faculty until retiring as Emeritus Professor in 1992. He was a highly respected scholar and teacher, with special areas of expertise in money and banking, microeconomics and macroeconomics, and econometrics. His academic honors included a Fulbright Scholarship to study in Cairo, Egypt in 1965, and a visiting professorship at the University of Peking (Beijing), China in 1983-1984. After 30 years of Minnesota winters (that included the hard work of maintaining their 100 year-old home), Bill and Bea were drawn back to the beautiful mountains of Colorado. Upon retirement, they moved to Estes Park, CO, where he helped his son Michael build the mountainside home where he lived out the remainder of his life. He spent many happy hours hiking with family and friends in Rocky Mountain National Park. Together with family, he also enjoyed travel throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico, Europe, Egypt, China, and Japan. He enjoyed hiking, boating, backpacking, camping, woodworking, and music. He loved languages, and explored family genealogy. He wrote a delightful memoir that helped capture his tremendous dry wit, humor, and exceptional insight. He often drew on his Welsh background to explain his appreciation for efficiency and economy. Bill was preceded in death by his parents, his brother John Williams, sister Janice Williams, and half-sister Bonni Williams Keaveny. He leaves behind his beloved wife and soulmate Bea, who cared for him at home until his death. His children Michael Williams (Sally Williams) from Phippsburg, CO, Donald Williams (Diane Golden) from Evergreen, CO, Blythe Williams (Richard Kay) from Durham, NC, and Jeffrey Williams (Lisa Conley) from Seattle, WA, loved him with all their hearts and held him in the highest regard as father and role model. His grandchildren Patrick Williams, Jessica Williams, Kirsten Williams, Adam Kay, Zhen Williams, and Sylvie Kay, truly loved and adored him. He will also be sadly missed by his special cousins Marcia Younger and Anita Bunch, his sisters-in-law Peggy Wynne and Ila Rooks, and many nieces, nephews, step-grandchildren, step-great-grandchildren, and special friends. Memorial contributions may be made to the in care of Allnutt 1302 Graves Ave. Estes Park CO 80517. A memorial gathering will be planned for a later date. Please visit www.allnutt.com to leave a message for the family.
Published in Estes Park Trail-Gazette on Feb. 1, 2017
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