He retired at age 49 as head of marketing for the company that produced Bubble Wrap, having joined it when it was not much of anything and left when it was in the big leagues.
He went on working but without remuneration, helping turn his beloved Clayton, N.Y., on the St. Lawrence Seaway into a tourist destination. He created the largest freshwater wooden-boat museum in the world — it was not much more than a small shipyard when he took over. Using some of his own property, he opened a vista in the town to the river. He was instrumental in river conservation and in reviving the old opera house.
Bill died peacefully March 28, 2019. He was predeceased by his wife, Sissy, and is survived by his three sons and their families. Bill’s son Brian had this to say of him: “He was a good guy. He opened his heart to everyone he met.”