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Willilam Hugh McInerney

Obituary Condolences

Willilam Hugh McInerney Obituary
William Hugh McInerney Oct. 5, 1924 - Nov. 12, 2013 Resident of Bay Area Bill passed away on Tuesday afternoon after a valiant year long battle with cancer. He finally made it into the "Irish Sports Page". Bill was born in Los Angeles, CA in 1924. His father, Cornelius, emigrated from Ireland and was an iron worker with Pacific Iron Company. Cornelius was killed in an industrial accident shortly after the birth of his son. Thereafter, his mother, Ellen, raised Bill in their family home that had been built by his father, in the Boyle Heights section of LA. Bill attended St Mary's Grammar School until the seventh grade, when his mother died. Bill's uncle, Joe McInerney, brought him to Oakland to live with his mother's four maiden aunts and three cousins, who had also lost their parents. Bill completed grammar school at St. Francis de Sales in Oakland followed by St. Joseph's High School in Alameda. He attended Santa Clara University where he served as Student Body President and graduated cum laude in 1947 with a bachelor's degree in political science. He then attended the University of California, Berkeley, Boalt Hall School of Law, where he was on the law review and graduated in 1950. His legal career began in the Alameda County District Attorney's Office before entering private practice. He was one of the founding members of the Oakland law firm of McInerney and Dillon, where he worked up until the last few months. For over sixty years, Bill concentrated his practice in construction law and became a national leader in the field, representing some of California's and the nation's largest contractors. He was past chairman of the Legal Advisory Committee of the Associated General Contractors and served as an arbitrator for the American Arbitration Association and the Public Works Contract Arbitration Panel for the State of California. He served on the Disputes Review Board for California's first private toll road project in Orange County and the Oakland Bay Bridge Retrofit Project. He served as corporate counsel for the Sisters of Holy Names of Jesus and Mary for over 40 years. He served on the Board of Fellows at Santa Clara University and was the president of its National Alumni Association. He served on the board of regents for both Holy Names University and St. Ignatius College Preparatory. He served for 10 years as a director and chairman of the Board of Directors of Hanna Boys Center. He was the chairman and member of the advisory board for Little Sisters of the Poor's St. Ann's Home in San Francisco. Bill most recently served on the President's Council of Thomas Aquinas College in Southern California. Bill spearheaded efforts to bring Immaculate Heart Radio to the Bay Area, volunteered at Mercy Retirement and Care Center, and more recently, assisted Archbishop Cordileone in locating temporary housing for a group of cloistered Carmelite Sisters from Nebraska. Bill was a Knight of Malta; serving as Secretary and Vice President as well as a board member. Along with his wife Mary, he volunteered on twenty-three trips to Lourdes assisting the Malades. Perhaps Bill and Mary's proudest service was leading the effort to open, staff and operate a free medical clinic for the poor at Oakland's Cathedral of Christ the Light. Since September, 2008, the clinic's volunteer doctors and nurses have serviced over 3000 people a year who would otherwise be without health care. While in Rome in May 2012, Bill received the Knight Grand Cross of Magistral Grace in Obedience. On October 17, 2013 Bill received the Silver Chalice Award from the Knights of Malta for his work on the medical clinic and on October 23, 2013 at the Red Mass of the St. Thomas More Society, he received the St. Thomas More Award for his life of service to the Church. Bill was happily married to, Mary Virginia McEnhill in 1949 and they recently celebrated their 64th anniversary. Bill and Mary have four children, Bill, Jr. (Karen), Bridget (Randy Harris), Timothy (Veronica) and Michael (Robyn). Bill loved his 15 grandchildren: Colleen, Mary and Theresa McInerney, Cornelius, Elizabeth, Liam and Dermot Harris, Seamus, Brendan, Declan, Maura, Tadhg and Liam McInerney and M. Riley and Keara McInerney. In lieu of flowers donations may be made in Bill's memory to the Order of Malta Clinic of Northern California, c/o McInerney & Dillon, Suite 1700, 1999 Harrison Street, Oakland, CA 94612. A Rosary will be held on Thursday November 21 at St. Theresa Church, Oakland at 7:30pm. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Friday November 22 at St. Theresa Church at 10AM. Private internment on Saturday at Cathedral of Christ the Light.
Published in Inside Bay Area on Nov. 17, 2013
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