- Published on Wednesday, 23 January 2013 00:00
- Written by Los Altos Town Crier
Resident of Los Altos
Passed away peacefully at home with family by his side on Dec. 21, 2012 at the age of 99. Bill grew up in the Midwest during the Great Depression and as a young teenager began working to help support his family. He attended the Univ. of Oklahoma for one year, then worked at Dun & Bradstreet for 7 years. In 1941 Bill was hired by Lockheed in Burbank, CA as a purchasing clerk. It was through his work there that he met Violet Lindsey, whom he married in 1948.
As his career advanced through almost 40 years with Lockheed, he held many positions, moving the family across the country several times. Before retirement in 1980 he was President of Lockheed Missiles & Space Co. in Sunnyvale, CA and Executive Vice President of Lockheed Corporation. In addition, Lockheed loaned Bill to NASA for 2 years in the mid 1960s. He served as Assistant Administrator for Industry Affairs and was awarded NASA’s Medal for Exceptional Service.
Bill and Vi enjoyed 30 years of retirement, traveling extensively across the US. He was an avid reader of the Wall Street Journal, keeping up with foreign affairs and financial news, and was a lifelong fan of baseball, horse racing and fine chocolate.
Bill was an amazing man dedicated to family and career. He was predeceased by Violet, his beloved wife of 63 years, and by his sister Darlaine Gaskins. He is deeply missed by daughters Marilyn (Eric) Johnson and Joann Rieke (Cindy Spencer), grandchildren Claire (Andy) Phillips and Scott Johnson, great-granddaughter Hayley Phillips, nephew Robert Gaskins, extended family and friends.
Per Bill’s wishes, no service will be