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WILLIAM JONES PEARCE


1926 - 2010 Obituary Condolences
WILLIAM JONES PEARCE Obituary
William Jones Pearce was born May 20, 1926, the youngest son of itinerant Methodist minister Dr. Rowan Pearce and pianist mother, Almeda Jones Pearce. He died on February 23, 2010 with family by his side.

Bill was raised in Carlisle, PA, struggled in school and found he was motivated more by sound than sight when presented with his first trombone at age 10. He then joined his family group of trumpet players accompanied by their mother on the piano.

As a teenager, with no formal music training, he was intrigued by the jazz sounds of Tommy Dorsey and Harry James, and soon created his own signature sound. He enjoyed recalling many afternoons relegated to the garage as a result of his early trombone "sounds" mimicking a B-17 bomber buzzing his family home.

Bill's trademark solo trombone sound is lyrical, smooth, and soars into high octave ranges with a slide vibrato that sounds more like a human voice than an instrument. His "singing" trombone is known in both Christian and secular music circles for its one of a kind sound. Today, Bill has become one of the most recorded solo trombonists of the 20th century with over 30 albums to his name, along with 50 years of radio broadcasting.

At age 18, Bill enlisted and served 2 ½ years in the US Marine Corp. While stationed in Hawaii awaiting deployment to Iow Jima with his combat unit, he was pulled out for service with the Marine Corp Band until his discharge. This led to traveling for 1 year as a soloist with the Bob Crosby Band.

Bill attended Moody Bible Institute in Chicago for 2 years and quickly found a niche broadcasting for the school's radio station, WMBI, where he remained for 25 years, and where he met and married Patricia Kopulos, a nursing student at Swedish Covenant Hospital.

In the 70's, Bill Pearce Associates founded the radio ministry "Nightsounds" which today reaches over 500 radio outlets across the country, Canada, and overseas, and spans 3 generations of listeners.

"Nightsounds" is expected to remain on the air for many years continuing to reach listeners with God's message using Bill's deep, resonant and reassuring voice. His humble nature and soft music in the late night hours continue to emotionally move listeners, and his topics such as singleness, pride, suicide, divorce, and romance, remain timeless.

Bill's ministry included vocal and trombone recordings with Dick Anthony, The Melody Four Quartet, The 16 Singing men, and was featured musically at various crusades with Dr. Billy Graham, as the concept of God and music grew.

In 1992, Bill was inducted into the National Religious Broadcasters Hall of Fame in recognition of his many accomplishments in radio broadcasting.

Bill is survived by Patricia Pearce and their 6 children, Marcia (husband Dr. Morrie) Johnson, Bryan (wife Lisa) Pearce, Laurie (husband Mike) Spejcher, Shannon Pearce, Glenn (wife Nina) Pearce and Randy (wife Kriss) Pearce. He is survived by 14 grandchildren, 3 of whom are Mount Vernon residents; Ryan, Connor and Erin Johnson. Bill is survived by a brother Dr. Rowan (wife Jeanne) Pearce, Jr., brother-in-law, Paul Hopkins, multiple nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents and just recently his beloved sister Jeanne Hopkins in 2009.

I love you Dad, and will close by using your words at the end of each broadcast; "This is Nightsounds saying goodnight, and may God bless you as our Lord and Savior watches over you until we meet again".

Condolences and donations can be sent to Nightsounds, P.O. Box 29, Wheaton, IL 60187.
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