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William B. George


1936 - 2020
William B. George Obituary
William B. George
December 29, 1936 - March 11, 2020
Resident of San Jose
William B. George was born on December 29, 1936, in Merced, California. He lived in San Francisco and Trona, California, but spent most of his growing up years in Fresno. He received his B.A. from Fresno State University and his M.A., M.F.A., and Ph.D. from the University of Iowa. His first professional teaching position was at Eastern New Mexico University in Portales, New Mexico. He married his wife Shirley on December 26, 1959 in Tipton, Iowa. Bill came to San José State University in 1965, where he taught French horn, music theory (including Schenkerian analysis), and graduate courses in the School of Music and Dance for 40 years. He was a beloved professor to hundreds of undergraduate and graduate students, known for his fastidious lectures, sense of humor, and deep concern for all of his students. Dr. George was a founding member of the Executive Board of the American Beethoven Society, which was founded in 1983 to establish and support The Ira F. Brilliant Center for Beethoven Studies at SJSU. He remained on the board until his passing and is the longest serving member of the board. After he retired from teaching in 2005, Bill volunteered at the Beethoven Center as a bibliographer for the largest Beethoven bibliographic database in the world, the Beethoven Gateway. He also served as a member of the editorial board for The Beethoven Journal, for which he also wrote reviews and articles. Dr. George passed away from complications from surgery at the age of 83 on March 11, 2020. He is survived by his wife of 60 years Shirley, brother Robert Lemley and sister-in-law Janice, niece Erika Renville, nephews Zachary and Chase Lemley, and Michael, Matthew. and Maurice Bishop.
In lieu of flowers you may make donations to SJSU Tower Foundation the Catherine F. George Fund for Music.


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Published in San Jose Mercury News/San Mateo County Times on Mar. 15, 2020
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