After two years’ service in the Navy, he and his Turtle Creek High School classmate, Layman Allen, matriculated at Princeton.
Bill was president of the University Press Club and belonged to Campus Club. He majored in SPIA, graduated with high honors, and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. He roomed with Layman Allen, Pete Spruance, and Don Stokes.
He graduated from Stanford Law School in 1954, where he was the executive editor of the Stanford Law Review. He then clerked for Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas.
For 24 years he practiced law at Tuttle & Taylor in Los Angeles before President Jimmy Carter appointed him to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in 1980. Bill’s more than 400 published opinions written during 17 years of service as an appellate judge established his reputation as a liberal jurist. His marriages to Kitty Horn and Merry Wiester ended in divorce.
Bill died Jan. 21, 2017, of heart failure at home in Bel-Air, Calif. He is survived by his wife, Jane Jelenko Norris; his children, Barbara, Donald, Kim, and Alison; four stepchildren; two grandchildren; and his sister, Dorothy Lankford.