NOKOMIS, Florida -- William H. Hildreth, 85, son of Mary (Reynolds) and Maurice Hildreth, died April 12, 2010, in Venice, Florida.
He was born in Lowell, MA, and lived in Chelmsford, MA before moving to Nokomis, Florida.
Survivors include, Alice (Cleri) his wife of 62 years; his children, Jane Diles of West Chester, Ohio, Tom of Tyngsboro, MA, Daniel of Pelham, NH, Steven of Pearland, Texas, Kathrin Gangi of Methuen, MA; and eight grandchildren, Colleen, Michelle, Michael, Melanie, Melissa, Austin, Alexandria and Matthew. He is also survived by daughters-in-law, Michelle and Diane, and son-in-law Peter Gangi.
He was predeceased by his sister, Catherine Rawnsley of CA, and son in-law, Elton Diles of Dracut, MA.
Bill was a World War II Army veteran who participated in the invasion of Europe on D-Day. He landed on Utah Beach with the 87th Chemical Mortar Battalion and fought through major battles of Europe from Cherbourg, to the Hurtgen Forest, to the Battle of the Bulge. He received the Purple Heart citation.
He was employed as a civilian chauffer for the U.S. Airforce at Bedford, MA for 35 years and retired in 1979, and was able to enjoy his favorite spot in the world, Long Pond, NH.
His family and many friends including all the children he taught to swim to the "Rock", how to water ski, and how to drive a car, will miss him, but will always have so many loving memories of him.
He will be buried at the Sarasota, FL National Cemetery and a memorial service is being planned for his friends in MA. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to your favorite charity or to TideWell Hospice, 5955 Rand Blvd., Sarasota, FL 34238.