William Eckhardt

BRATTLEBORO- William “Bill” Eckhardt, 99, died on Monday, June 26, at Brattleboro Memorial Hospital.
Bill was born on January 24, 1924, in Mount Vernon, NY, to William and Marie (Berghausen) Eckhardt. He joined three sisters at home, Norma (“Nonie”), Eleanor, and Margaret (who died young).
Bill attended schools in Mount Vernon, graduating from A.B. Davis High School in 1942. He enrolled at Hobart College in Geneva, NY, where he played football and lacrosse. He also signed up for the V-12 Officer Training program, then successfully completed naval officer training at the Northwestern Midshipman School in Chicago. In 1943, he enlisted in the US Navy, eventually receiving a commission as ensign, serving on the L.C.I. (L.) 548, an infantry landing craft. After the war, Bill returned to Hobart College, majoring in business administration and receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree. He worked as an insurance adjustor at Dun and Bradstreet in New York City, then worked for several years at American Mutual Liability Insurance Co. in Boston. In 1968, Bill began a 55-year career working for Bartlett Tree Experts as a sales representative.  
In the 1960s, Bill’s love of the sea led him to purchase a sailboat, which he upgraded several times to a larger vessel over the years. His last boat, the “Bali Hai,” was specially made for him at the Choy Lee Shipyard in Hong Kong. Bill was a Boy Scout troop leader for a number of years while living in Greenwich, CT.
In 1968, Bill met the love of his life, Nancy W. Carlson. They shared many common interests, especially sailing. Wedding bells rang for them on October 10, 1970, when they were married at Christ Church in Greenwich, CT. On that day, Bill became a stepfather to Nancy’s three teenaged children, Jennifer, Christopher, and Peter. The “step” in stepfather was quickly forgotten, as Bill excelled in all aspects of fatherhood. The family lived in Connecticut, first in Greenwich, then in Fairfield.
 In 1972, Bill and Nancy purchased Top Notch Farm on East Hill in Townshend and made their home there for the next 42 years. Bill became very involved in the local community, becoming a selectman for many years. He was accepted as a Freemason, as well as a Shriner, and was a member of the American Legion Post 16. The Eckhardts were faithful members of the Jamaica Community Church for many years. Bill was instrumental in installing a chairlift at the church, as well as a sign in front of the church. He also established an art scholarship program which benefits local Jamaica students who attend Leland & Gray Union High School. On several occasions, Bill even found himself offering a sermon. In 2014, Bill and Nancy sold their hilltop home and moved to Valley Cares Assisted Living facility in Townshend. Bill eventually moved into Pine Heights Rehab Center in Brattleboro in 2018.
Bill was preceded in death by his parents, as well as a granddaughter, Rebecca Harris; his sisters Margaret, Nonie, and Eleanor; a son, Christopher Carlson; a nephew, Lee Woodward, and nieces Joan Kingsley and Nanette Stansbury.
He is survived by his wife of 52 years, Nancy W. Eckhardt; a daughter, Jennifer Harris, and a son, Peter (Roxane) Carlson; nephews Peter Kingsley and Grant Woodward; and nieces Laurie Jenssen and Barbara Hirtle. Also surviving are nine grandchildren: Todd (Kathryn) Einig, Tracey (Travis) Farrell, Kristin Grossbach, Amy Carlson, Jaclyn (Michael) Kruse, Rachel Carlson, Sarah (Justin) Adams, Jared Carlson (Clarissa Taylor-Wesley), and Jason (Kayla) Carlson; as well as 13 great-grandchildren: Ava Einig, Madelyn and Freya Adams, Alan and Joshua Grossbach; Shayla and Sharice Dennis, Brayden, Grayson, and Emersyn Kruse, Evangeline and Oaklen Carlson, and Wesley Carlson;
A celebration of life service will be held at the Jamaica Community Church at 7 Depot Street, Jamaica, on Friday, June 30, at 11 am. A reception will follow the service.
In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Jamaica Community Church, PO Box 54, Jamaica, VT 05343, or Grace Cottage Hospital, 185 Townshend Road, Townshend, VT 05353.
To offer condolences to Bill’s family visit www.atamaniuk.com.

The Deerfield Valley News

797 VT Route 100 North
Wilmington, VT 05363

Phone: 802-464-3388
Fax: 802-464-7255

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