You’ll be missed, Bill.

22 Aug 2011 by Jim Gibbons, 2 Comments »

As many of you who follow this blog already know, Bill Will—the co-founder of Camp Shewahmegon and one of the main reasons so many of us have such fond summer camp memories—died recently. To say he’ll be missed is an understatement. He was tremendous and I know I personally owe him a tremendous amount.

There aren’t enough words to describe Bill Will and what he did for me, let alone every camper who spent a summer a Shewahmegon, and yet, at the same time, there are no words to describe what he meant to so many of us. He was larger than life, yet had an effect on so many lives. He was a living legend and a tall tale, but extraordinarily human. He was a superlative man, but not a single superlative thing I can think to write seems to do him justice.

Bill Will in The Lodge. Lifted from Michael Rubin's uploads to the Shewahmegon Facebook group.

I think that’s part of the reason that posting something here about Bill’s death has been a challenge. There was so much to say that it was too much to say and I couldn’t figure out what to say at all.

Thankfully, David Will—my friend and Bill’s grandson—nudged me about doing a post. Just the suggestion made me realize my inability to write something was neglecting one of the things I’ve always intended this site to be about: Community. Put simply, I can’t do the memory of Bill Will justice on my own. I need your help. All of your help, and I’m humbly asking for that help so we can celebrate a truly remarkable individual.

So, here’s how you can help…
Please send any pictures you have of Bill Will at Camp Shewahmegon to me at jimgibbons1[at]gmail[dot]com (Please substitute “@” for “[at]” and “.” for “[dot]”, of course), along with any info you’d like to run alongside the photo: the year it was taken, what’s going on, any memories you associate with it, etc. I’m happy to post text-based memories as well, but I’d really love to show Bill in his element at camp—and a whole lot of it—for us all to remember.

Send along as many photos as you like as often as you like and I’ll post them all up as soon as I can. The man deserves statues and epic poems, but I think if we all band together, we can get close to doing him justice. Thanks in advance for your help!

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  1. Tizzone8 says:

    Unfortunately, I never made it back to the camp. I worked there in the cantine in the summer of 1995, some of the best memories of my life! I really liked the way Bill and Gerry listened to my input and followed my advice on some things. And Bobbi too, she was a real firecracker!

    Tyson T.

  2. Tizzone8 says:

    Oops, I spelled cantine the French way. My bad!

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