William E. D. Jantzen ’45 died April 13, 2010
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WILLIAM JANTZEN ’45
A combat veteran of WWII, Bill died peacefully in the company of his family on April 13, 2010, and made his final voyage to Viking Valhalla. Bill was born in Brookline, Mass., and graduated from the Portsmouth Priory in Portsmouth, R.I., going on to graduate from Amherst College in 1947.
While attending Amherst, he played football and volunteered for service in the U.S. Navy. He was commissioned an ensign in June 1944 after completing the V-12 at Williams College, where he played ice hockey, and the naval midshipman school (90-day wonder) at Plattsburg, N.Y. He was deployed to the Pacific Theatre and participated in various operations including Leyte Gulf, Lingayen Gulf, Okinawa and Tacloban. He was present in Tokyo Bay for the signing of Japan’s unconditional surrender, and he received multiple decorations for his service.
Bill worked in the chemical processing industry in New Jersey and Boston, enjoyed coaching his sons’ sports teams, gardening, sailing with his children, eating Brigham’s ice cream (mocha chip) and assembling ham radio towers with his son Tom.
Bill is survived by his wife of 60 years, Gloria Curren Jantzen, his five children and ten grandchildren. A private military burial was held in Massachusetts National Military Cemetary, Bourne, Mass.