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William ‘Bill’ Fox

William ‘Bill’ Fox of Otsego passed away Monday, April 5, 2021 at his home in Otsego.

Bill was born June 2, 1928 in Albany, GA the son of Stewart Benjamin and Margarete Augusta (Lohrke) Fox. He had proudly served his country in the US Army. Bill graduated from Western Michigan College with a Bachelor of Science degree in 1956 and Western Michigan University with his Masters in 1957. He continued his post graduate studies at the University of Michigan, Michigan State University and University of Nebraska. Bill had taught at Otsego Public Schools from 1957-1958 then was an Associate Professor at Western Michigan University from 1959-1988. He was a member of Knights of Columbus 4th Degree Council 7796, was an Otsego City Commissioner, an Otsego District Library Board member and enjoyed historical re-enactments.

On June 29, 1957 at Christ the Good Shepherd Church in Lincoln Park, Michigan he married Barbara Barrow who survives. Also surviving are his sons, Marc (Kimberlee) Fox of Holland and Brian Fox of Douglasville, GA; 5 grandchildren, Jenna, Amanda, David, Bridgette and Andrew Fox; and a great granddaughter, Ella Conover; and several nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents and a brother and a sister.

Due to covid-19 restrictions masks and social distancing is required.Friends may meet with Bill’s family Friday, April 9, 2021 from 10-11 A.M. at St. Margaret Catholic Church where a Mass of Christian Burial will follow at 11:00 A.M. with Rev. Fr. Simon Manjooran officiating. Burial will follow at St. Margaret Catholic Cemetery, Otsego with Military Honors by Otsego V.F.W. Post #3030.

Contributions in memory of Bill may be made to St. Margaret Catholic Church.

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Condolence Messages

Leola Schlaf

April 6, 2021 at 3:23 pm

So very sorry to hear of “Grandpa Fox’s” passing. I, so enjoyed visiting with him the few times I was able to see him when visiting in Holland. I know he will be greatly missed . Prayers to all of you!


John H. Schlaf

April 6, 2021 at 3:31 pm

While our interactions with Professor Fox were limited, we have continually observed the positive influence he has had had on his entire Family and most especially the grandchildren and great grandchild we shared with him. They loved him dearly. Our most sincere condolences to all. Mr. & Mrs. John H. Schlaf, Galesburg, IL.


Terry VanLent

April 6, 2021 at 4:17 pm

Barb, I will be praying for you and your family that your hearts my heal. I always looked forward to seeing you and Bill at church….he was a wonderful man❤️ Love, Terry Arehart VanLent


Jack & Sandra Seiler

April 6, 2021 at 4:53 pm

What can we say except He was a gem!!

And he will be missed.

Our deepest sympathy to you Barb and Family.


Kimberly Fisher

April 6, 2021 at 4:54 pm

Words can not express how sad our family is. Growing up next door to him was so rewarding. I was his “Kimmer” and he treated our family like his own. As I grew older and have my own family now, he still was very involved with our family and my kids grew to love him like a grandpa too. Many fond memories that we won’t ever forget. Our thoughts and prayers are with the whole family. Love to all

Kim (Stephens) Fisher


Bonnie Goodacre

April 6, 2021 at 5:01 pm

Deepest sympathies. and condolences to “ Mr. Fox’s” wife Barbara and their children and entire family and friends. We, my husband and I, had both of them as teachers in HS at Otsego, both were favorites. Both were favorite subjects, but they each made them interesting and fun. He will be greatly missed , of that I have no doubt. Again deepest sympathies.


Agnes schmitt

April 6, 2021 at 5:10 pm

Mrs. Fox, my deepest sympathy. I can still remember both of you being so kind to our family, when both of our parents passed away- Stanley and Bethel Schmitt.

May God’s Almighty Grace be with you during this difficult time.

In Christ Love,

Agnes Schmitt Vanarsdal


Maria Dinah Howrigon

April 6, 2021 at 5:25 pm

I am so sorry to hear of Bill’s passing. He was a great person. Always there for everyone.


Jennifer Mitchell

April 6, 2021 at 5:30 pm


I am so sorry to hear of Bill’s passing. What a wonderful man he was—I’m sure there was never a dull moment with him around. Keeping you and your family in my prayers.

Jennifer Chappell Mitchell


Neil &Sue Browne

April 6, 2021 at 5:40 pm

Barb, you know how much I loved Bill and enjoyed his stories. I even asked him at one point how he met you!

I am so saddened to read of his death. I wanted him to live forever!

You will be in my prayers as will the boys.


Andrea Estelle

April 6, 2021 at 6:12 pm

Barb and Fox family – our sincerest sympathies on the passing of Bill. The entire Otsego District Library staff will dearly miss our visits with beloved patron Bill Fox. He came in to check out his big stack of books from us but always brought us the best stories! My favorite was the story of Barb’s camel ride in the desert! He was a joy and will be greatly missed at the library. He was a favorite and a truly wonderful and kind spirit. We are so glad to have known him. You are in our thoughts and prayers and we will definitely be truly missing Bill in his awesome coon skin cap stopping by the library. Andrea Estelle, ODL Director


The Reed Family

April 6, 2021 at 6:51 pm

Dear Mrs. Fox, Marc, Brian and families,

We were neighbors “way back when” and enjoyed talking to Mr. Fox whenever he was outside working in the yard. He was a kind-hearted man, and we know he will be greatly missed by his family and friends. May God bless you with many sweet memories as you mourn the loss of your husband and dad… and honor his life.

Our condolences,

The Reed Family


Christine Augustine

April 6, 2021 at 7:13 pm

Oh Barb, I am so sorry. You and yours are in our prayers. I have so missed the two of you at mass. God Bless


Tom and Paula Holmes

April 6, 2021 at 7:18 pm

So sorry Barb to hear Bill ‘s passing. He left a great legacy in the Otsego area. He will be sorely missed.


Tina Bernheisel

April 6, 2021 at 8:14 pm

Sorry for your loss. Hugs to everyone. May you find peace in his memory. He will be always remembered by The Root family and The Bernheisel family


Mary Kay Fox

April 6, 2021 at 8:35 pm

I loved this man. He was as good as they come and always kind to me or pretty much to anyone he met. I would not have had my college or career success without his love, guidance, or support. My condolences to Barb, Marc, Kim, Brian, Jenna, Amanda and David who suffer the biggest loss. I told Bridgette and Andrew today, that God had a special place for Bill in heaven!


Tom Kehr,

April 6, 2021 at 8:59 pm

So sorry to learn of Knights of Columbus Assembly 2135 Sir William S. Fox’s passing. Thoughts and prayers going out to Barbara and his Family. May the Peace of Christ be them them. Sir William was an active and valued member of the Knights of Columbus Otsego Assembly 2135 4th Degree, and he will be missed.

Vivat Jesus!


Ruby Rogers

April 6, 2021 at 10:22 pm

Mrs Fox-

We are sorry to hear of Mr.Fox passing, you are in our prayers at this time. And May the Lord comfort you at this time.

Mr. Fox was always so friendly we used to walk by alot when I and my kids would walk to Hardings and you guys always amazed me doing all your yard work on your own. Mr. Fox One time made me jump cause all the sudden i hear its a beautiful day for a walk, he was in your screen porch all stretched with his newspaper i smiled and said yes it is. He was just the best of making you feel noticed and always cheerful. We need more mrs. And mr. Foxes in the neighborhoods.


Maryln Langeance

April 7, 2021 at 7:44 am

Barb, Will miss seeing Bill. Always enjoyed talking with him. My prayers are with you and your family


David/Carol Boulter

April 7, 2021 at 9:40 am

Dear Fox family, First of all, I am truly sorry for your loss. Secondly, I could spend some time writing of interactions with Bill over the years. He always had a ‘yarn’ to tell that usually had to do with his involvement with his history re-enactments. I remember his ‘pelt belt’ especially. The crew that I worked with was digging out a drain on a boating access site and accidently ended the life of a Badger. I got on the phone and called Bill. He said to put the thing on ice and bring it to him ASAP. He needed it for his pelt belt.

We moved out of Otsego City 40 years ago and things and people are missed. Bill Fox along with Ed Goodsell are the top of that list. Never forget those who can tell you about History.


Therese Andrews (McGowan)

April 7, 2021 at 11:39 am


I am so sad for you and your family. Bill was wonderful! He was so full of life and love. Steve and I were privileged to get to know him and you.

We will greatly miss him. I know that your faith in God will sustain you. “Blessed are the sorrowful for they shall be comforted.” Please know that you are in my thoughts and prayers.




Gloria Smith

April 7, 2021 at 12:39 pm

Gloria and Nathan Smith send condolences. I remember Uncle Bill in our Buckskinning days. Going to schools and around the community cooking fire. His laughter and support will be in my memories for as long as I live.


Andy Lang

April 7, 2021 at 12:57 pm

Barb, Marc, Brian, David.

I am so sorry to here of Bill’s passing. He was wonderful mentor and even more so a valued friend. He took the time to teach me which end of a muzzleloader went bang and, even though I was many years his younger, always treated me as an equal. He patiently walked me through the process of muzzleloading but more importantly shared many life lessons that would prove valuable. I am especially thankful that my wife and both my boys had the immense pleasure of meeting and getting to know him. We always looked forward to seeing “Uncle Bill.” He was certainly a special friend and will be missed. We will be honored lift up prayers for the family as you traverse the days ahead. No doubt his legacy will be remembered for many generations!


Georgia Newman

April 7, 2021 at 1:56 pm

Bill fox was everyone’s friend. One couldn’t know Bill without developing a sincere affection for the man. I was fortunate to be one of his history students in high school for his brief tenure at OHS. Roger first met Bill at Vandercook Hall, their WMU dorm where Bill was a resident assistant. In later years, Roger was selling Bill’s famous raccoon caps at our antiques mall downtown. Our last conversation with Bill was at the Otsego library, and it was filled with his trademark warmth and kindness. Roger and I send our condolences and love to you dear Barb, and to all in your family.


Nancy Snyder (hess)

April 7, 2021 at 3:59 pm

Dear Barb,

Wishing you blessed memories. Thank you for always being so kind to

me you two.


Rosemary Hayes

April 7, 2021 at 6:19 pm

Dear Mrs. Fox and family. My deepest condolences to all on Mr. Fox’s passing. You are both among my favorite teachers, and am proud to have returned the favor as I “taught” the boys in pre – school catechism classes at St. Margaret ‘s.

With prayers for all,

Rosemary Hayes.


Cathy Harrell

April 7, 2021 at 6:23 pm

I am so very sorry for your loss. You are in my prayers. I will always remember seeing Bill’s smiling face at roundevous. I like to think he, Dave and Howard are sharing a fire now. One day we will all be together again.

Cathy Harrell


Barbara Schelb Davis

April 7, 2021 at 7:00 pm

Mrs Fox Iam so sorry for your loss. I have fond memories of us history class at Otsego high, He was a very special person and teacher. Both of you were among my favorites from high school. I graduated in 1960 and continued with my education thanks to both of you. I know God will help you and your family during this difficult time.


Andy Mason

April 7, 2021 at 7:51 pm

Mrs. Fox so sorry. I loved him since the day I met him at a Knights of Columbus meeting for the first time. He stopped me from making a big mistake. He said no, no, no. We don’t put pop in our whiskey here. Can’t say I stayed true to that but I always did around him. Bill will be missed.


Nathan Smith

April 7, 2021 at 8:04 pm

Uncle Bill provided gave me so much love and support growing up. He was a role model and someone I looked up too. He had this laugh that always do boisterous and you could hear it all over the campground or even at the gun show. My condolences go out to his wife and his family. Go rest high on that mountain uncle Bill and I hope you and Don, Fred, ,Clark and all of those who have gone home before have welcomed you to the camp fire.


Bob Haskins

April 7, 2021 at 8:44 pm

My condolences to Mrs Fox and the family. Mr Fox was a very solid and amazing fixture in our neighborhood growing up. My grandmother lived next door to the Fox’s until she passed. I always loved when he set up his Teepee! And dressed the parts! He was an amazing man, and a great teacher to all who met him!


family. Weber

April 7, 2021 at 9:02 pm

Barb, I am so sadde ed to hear of Bill’s passing. I’ll always remember the good times we had either you both. I pray God gives you peace during this time. Love to you and your famkly.


Bob Cowels

April 7, 2021 at 9:16 pm

Bob and Jan Cowels Barb Fox and Family We are so sad to hear of Bill’s passing. Bill was one in a million. Not only a great story teller , but true 4th Degree Color Corp Member. Never can I remember once having Him refuse to join our participation in a Religious function. Rest assured, he’s probably checking with St. Michael the Archangel right now to see when the next duty calls. Our sympathy are are with your family Love to you all, Jan and Bob.


Paul "Dave" Ullrey

April 7, 2021 at 9:25 pm

Mrs. Fox, I am so sorry for your families loss. Some of my fondest memories growing up was spending time with your family. I’ll miss him calling me “horse” when he would see me around town. A great man with a great family.


Chuck Amos

April 8, 2021 at 8:11 am

A good man who lived a good life.

Uncle Bill as he was called by many in the reenactment community gave off a warmth that made it comfortable to be around him.

Talented, charismatic , and caring.

Rest In Peace uncle Bill.

Heart felt condolences to Marc and the whole family.


Patricia Ann King

April 8, 2021 at 1:07 pm

Sorry for your loss. Bill was a guy. He will be missed at muzzle loading gun shows. he knew you where ever he seen you. He will be missed by that knew him.


Larry & Anna Dennany

April 9, 2021 at 11:43 am

I knew Mr. And Mrs. Fox and their boys first as the family that sat up front at St. Margaret Church, always poised and polished. I knew Bill later as one of the gentlemen Knights of Columbus who worked Bingo tirelessly. He was always ready with a story, and was practiced in the dramatic delivery with amusing embellishments…even at Bronson Hospital where we ran into each other for lab work. Running into Bill always was a pleasure, always made the day better. A brighter light will shine in heaven as they welcome this gentleman who did such a good job in his life on earth. We will miss this special man.


Steve & Nancy Motter

April 9, 2021 at 1:23 pm

Our sincere condolences to the entire family and friends and we’re so happy to have gotten to know Bill he was a great man and he was Loved by all


Sondra M. Mackin (Jennings)

April 9, 2021 at 1:25 pm

Mrs. Fox and families….So sorry to learn of Mr. Fox’s passing! I, and the Class of 1959, was fortunate

to have had Mr. Fox for our Class Advisor and Home Room Teacher! He and of course you were two

of my very favorite teachers… both were great role models for OHS and its students! He touched

so many many lives in his 90 years!! Know that you are in my thoughts and prayers!


Jonathan Bush

April 9, 2021 at 1:45 pm

Bill was a wonderful man. I loved our conversations at Knights’ bingo and at the Otsego Library. He was a real scholar and a teacher who cared about all those around them, and he always had a mischievous smile and a good joke ready. I’d sometimes even get a good laugh out of him before Mass. He gave so much to WMU and all our students. Everyone was better in Bill’s presence. I’m proud to have known him.


Don & Kathi Jankowski

April 9, 2021 at 5:49 pm

The Fox Family — So sorry to hear of Bill’s passing. The family will be in our thoughts and prayers.


Teri and Paul Schwartz

April 9, 2021 at 6:50 pm

Bill was such a wonderful warm person. He took time to talk to people and through his conversation made us all know that we were special to him. He truly cared about everyone. We will miss him so much. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.

Paul and Teri Schwartz


Craig Warren

April 9, 2021 at 6:57 pm

I don’t think I ever talked to Bill that I didn’t learn something new. Antique firearms, history, folklore, news, whatever it was. We will all miss that twinkle in his eye and the fashion statement he invariably made. Best to Barb.


Carol Wuebbling

April 13, 2021 at 12:11 pm

Mrs. Fox, my 7th grade English teacher, was an inspiration to all us kids. As an adult, I moved away but returned often to visit my family and occasionally was lucky enough to see the Foxes in a restaurant. They were always so gracious, going out of their way to greet my parents and wish them well. Otsego will surely miss Mr. Fox’s authentic friendliness and knowledge-sharing. My condolences to the entire family.


Nick and Mary VanAtter(Bradshaw)

April 14, 2021 at 11:28 am

Mrs. fox, I am so sorry for your loss. He was such a good teacher to both my brother, Melvin, and me! Please know that I am praying for God’s comfort and peace as you and your family grieve and rejoice in his life that was a blessing to all who knew him. Barb, I always enjoy seeing you while I am shopping. You always remember the students by name.

Nick and Mary VanAtter(Bradshaw)


Sandy Brink

April 15, 2021 at 7:09 pm

Mrs. Fox and Family. I am so sorry for your loss. My mother and sister Sharon lived across the street from you for many years. Mom always enjoyed talking with all of you and watching you and your husband working in your yard. I have many fond memories of talking with you also and having you as a teacher Mrs. Fox. Cherish your fond memories. My thoughts and prayers are with you.


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