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1918 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
Age 98, of Catawba Island, OH and Mt. Lebanon, PA, passed away peacefully with his family by his side on Thursday, February 16, 2017, at his residence. He was born on July 4, 1918, in Uniontown, PA, the son of Thomas A. and Jean Armour (Hawthorne) Copeland. He married Margaret Emler and she preceded him in death in 1979. He married Joan Engelsen on January 24, 1981, and she survives.
William served in the U.S. Army Air Force for five years. He earned his Bachelor's Degree from Penn State University and earned his Juris Doctorate Degree from the University of Pittsburgh.
Mr. Copeland joined Peoples First National Bank and Trust Company, predecessor to Pittsburgh National Bank in 1947 as a trust administrator. Within Pittsburgh National Bank, he rose through numerous positions including executive vice president in charge of the trust division and vice chairman of the board. He was later named vice chairman of the board of the bank's holding company, PNC Financial Corp. which he held until his retirement in 1983.
He was the 1980 Pittsburgh Man of the Year. He was also very active as an advisory director and past president of the Allegheny Trails Council of the Boy Scouts of America and local council representative for the National Council of Boy Scouts of America; he was director, co-founder and vice president of the National Flag Foundation; chairman emeritus of Family House and Civic Light Opera; and chairman of the board of directors of the Pittsburgh Foundation. He was a member of the board of trustees of the Henry C. Frick Educational Commission; as well as trustee and chairman of the Advisory Committee of the Forbes Fund. He was also director emeritus and former chairman of St. Clair Memorial Hospital; founding vice chairman of the Health Education Center; and former chairman of the Hospital Trustee Forum. He was also a former member of the Board of visitors for the University of Pittsburgh Law School. He was chairman of the Hospital Council of Western Pennsylvania for several terms. In addition, he served as a director to many businesses including Federated Investors, Inc., and Michael Baker Corp. He was also chairman of the board of trustees for Robert Morris College; 50 years Board of members of Duquesne Club; founded the Good Neighbor Emergency Food Fund; was the outside director of Ryan Homes; as well as the public relations chairman of the United Way of Allegheny County.
After his retirement from the business world in Pittsburgh, Bill and Joan retired to Catawba Island where he remained active in community and civic organizations until he was into his late 80's. He then turned his attention to enjoying boating and fishing on their boat, Cloud V, playing golf at the Catawba Island Club, and enjoying his daily cigar "chews". Their combined families were always present, as well as his beloved yellow Lab, Honey-B, and shared many good times together.
Survivors include his loving wife, Joan; son, Thomas A. Copeland, Youngstown, OH; daughters, Clare (John) Parker-Moon, Chattanooga, TN, Dawn (Doug) Houser, Marcellus, MI, Jennifer Turner, Sandusky, OH, Beverly (Doug) DiDio, Parma, OH; grandchildren, Pete O. (Angie) Copeland, Kelly (Jeremy), Jason, Dana, Jessica (Casey), Jill, Jake (Loren), Steven (Allie), Beth, Michael; and 13 great- grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents; his great-grandson, Christian; and his beloved dog, Honey-B.
Visitation will be held on Monday, February 20, 2017, from 2-8 p.m. at the NEIDECKER, LEVECK & CROSSER FUNERAL HOME, 1124 Fulton Street, Port Clinton, Ohio. Funeral services will be held on Tuesday, February 21, 2017, at 10 a.m. at the Funeral Home, with Chaplain Mel Salyer, officiating. Burial will follow in Oakland Cemetery in Sandusky, OH.
For those unable to attend, there will be a memorial service held in Pittsburgh at a later date.
Memorial contributions may be made to the William J. Copeland Fund of the Pittsburgh Foundation.
Online condolences may be expressed at www.neideckerleveckcrosser.com.
A Special Thanks to Dr. Carl Steele and the Home Instead caregivers for all the love and support shown to William.
Published in Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Feb. 19, 2017
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