William H. (Bill) Alexander Jr. passed into the arms of Jesus on July 18, 2018. He was born February 13, 1924 in Riverton NJ, the fifth of six children and only son of W. H. Alexander and Helen A. Harkness, both of Pottstown, PA.
He grew up in Pennsylvania where he enjoyed trapping muskrats with his dog, Buff. After graduating from high school, he attended the Pennsylvania Maritime Academy, earned a Second Mate License and served in the Merchant Marine during WWII, in the dangerous war conditions of the North Atlantic, helping to supply Allied forces.
Bill married Fay Elizabeth Horner, August 4, 1949 in San Francisco, while serving in the Navy. During the Korean War he served on the minesweeper, the USS Shoveler as Full Lieutenant and Executive Officer. After the war, he graduated in Political Science from Lehigh University in 1956.
Bill and Fay moved to Florida with their two sons in 1956, eventually moving to Gainesville Florida, where his daughter was born. He earned a Master of Arts in Teaching from the University of Florida in 1966.
After employment at the University of Florida in Urban Planning, Bill worked at Lake City Community College (now Florida Gateway College) in the Park Technology program until his retirement in 1993.
An avid reader, student of history, philosopher, hearty singer, and dog lover, Bill fully came to faith in Jesus Christ in 1977, was baptized in 1984, and gained a love of scripture and prayer that lasted the rest of his life. A gifted mentor and encourager, he guided many who sought his counsel. He worked for Comfort Keepers during his retirement, and volunteered at the Micanopy Historical Museum, a faithful docent for many years until 2017.
Bill was known for his loyalty, resonant voice, welcoming smile, pithy sayings, friendly debates, optimistic outlook and dapper headwear. He enjoyed the outdoors his entire life, taking his family on camping trips to the national and state parks of the east and west coasts throughout his lifetime. He also enjoyed wood chopp ing and a crackling fire in his woodstove every winter.
Bill is survived by his wife of 68 years, Fay Alexander, his children Bill III, Jon and Beth, daughter-in-law, Ayleen, two sisters: Jean Heard and Marjorie Dean, and many nieces and nephews.
A memorial service will be held August 4, 2018 at 2 pm at:
St. Andrew’s Church,
2715 NW 39th Ave
Gainesville, Fl 32605
with a reception following at Living Faith Fellowship:
5510 NW 39th Ave
Gainesville, FL 32606
Arrangements are under the care of Forest Meadows Funeral Home, Gainesville, Fl.
Bill Alexander was a gracious and special friend to me as well as our family. His encouragement brought me love and joy “better than I deserved!” May God’s comfort and peace continue to his family and friends. Bill will be so missed but never be forgotten. Ps. 116:15 ❤️????
Brother Bill was a great man of God, a man of faith full of joy and compassion. We’ll miss his big smile and exuberant laughter. A great encourager, and a gentleman of the highest order. Rest in perfect peace in the bosom of your Lord. May the God of all comfort and consolation remain with the beloved family he left behind.
Bill Sr. was a wonderful father & friend. When my dad passed in 2011, he told me if I ever needed any “fatherly advice” he would be happy to oblige. He had a booming voice, but was very kind and caring. When I’d visit, he’d always ask about the goings-on at Double Blessing Farm, and laugh hard at my little animal adventure stories, which only egged me on to tell more of the same. His wood-chopping should be legendary as when the tree guys took down 4 HUGE laurel oaks a few years ago, he came and hacked away at the huge trunks on my burn pile, standing on a trunk 3′ off the ground, cutting it for firewood for their lovely wood stove. I am so thankful to have had a brief visit during the ending of his days, when he once again asked me “how are things on the farm?” It has been such a privilege to be able to visit the Alexander family (since 1985!) and enjoy their company, especially these last few years when Bill Sr., & his wonderful wife Fay would let me visit. What a blessing to have known him & may God extend His Peace to the family.