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FOSSELMAN, WILLIAM P. December 3, 1919 - April 18, 2012 William "Bill" Fosselman, age 92, of the famed Fosselman Ice Cream family died on April 18, 2012. Bill was born in Waverly, Iowa, the son of Elizabeth H. Green and Christian A. Fosselman. In 1924, his dad moved the family to Pasadena and started the Fosselman Creamery that served the area with wholesale ice cream and dairy products. In 1937, Christian decided to open a retail business and together with his son Bill, the first Fosselman's Ice Cream store was established in South Pasadena. The store was a true labor of love with most of seven Fosselman children, four boys and three girls, helping out at one time or another. In 1939, the manufacturing process was moved to Alhambra where a retail store was added and remains today. Due to customer demand, food items were added to the ice cream store that transformed it into the typical old fashion ice cream and coffee shop operation. Fosselman's soon became the local hang out for coffee breaks, lunch and dinner. Mid afternoon when school got out and after Friday night football games, the store was packed with teenagers hanging out at the local malt shop. Anyone working or growing up in South Pasadena in the 40's, 50's, 60's and 70's knew Fosselman's was the heart of the community. Bill took time off to serve four years in the Navy during World War II as a Naval Ordinance Specialist. Prior to his enlistment, Bill met and married Mary Barber, his wife of 68 years. Bill was very active in civic organizations. These included the Junior Chamber of Commerce, the Chamber of Commerce and the Oneonta Club. It has been nearly 40 years since Fosselman's closed its doors on Mission Street. A bronze plaque is imbedded in the concrete sidewalk memorializing where the original Fosselman's once stood and a constant reminder to many folks where business deals, first dates, and social gatherings took place. Bill was very active at Holy Family Catholic Church. He and Mary were always helping out with the food bank program and Bill was also very active in the Saint Vincent de Paul Society. Bill is survived by his wife, Mary, his brother Monsignor John Fosselman, his sister Carol Gaglio, his four children, Tina Shaw, Peter Fosselman, Roberta Wienke and Mary Jo King, six grandchildren and six great grandchildren. A rosary vigil will be held on Thursday, April 26, 2012 at 7:30 PM. A funeral mass will be held on Friday, April 27, 2012 at 10 AM. Services will be held at Holy Family Catholic Church in South Pasadena. Internment will be private at Riverside National Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that a donation be made to the Sisters of Social Service, 4316 Lanai Rd., Encino, CA 91436 or the St. Vincent de Paul Society, 1527 Fremont Ave., South Pasadena, CA 91030.
Published in the Los Angeles Times on Apr. 22, 2012
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