William George Tapply '62

From The Olio

20 Outlook Drive, Lexington 73, Massachusetts
Prepared at Lexington High School
American Studies
Delta Upsilon, Secretary
Baseball "1962', 3 Basketball "1962", 2

William George (Bill) Tapply '62, died July 28, 2009
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From the Taunton Daily Gazette

An Invitation

Here is a wonderful invitation to celebrate his life.&nbsp


Bill ("Tap") Tapply passed away on July 28 after a long and courageous battle with Leukemia. Before entering Amherst, Tap graduated from Lexingon (Massachusetts) High School where he excelled in basketball, breaking many school scoring records, He was also an outstanding infielder on the school's baseball team.

Tap was a low key, caring, thoughtful person with a highly competitive spirit. This was evident in his winning exploits in both intramural football and basketball at Amherst. When the chips were down the team could depend on Tap to provide the difference between winning and losing. Tap majored in American Studies and was a member of Delta Upsilon fraternity.

A man of many talents, Tap was a writer, sportsman, teacher, and athlete. He was a highly regarded and prolific fiction writer of over thirty mystery novels. Most of his novels featured crusty Boston attorney-turned-sleuth, Brady Coyne. Recently he introduced his newest crime solver, the intrepid Maine fishing guide, Stoney Calhoun. Both characters exhibited personality traits that were unmistakably Tap's. He was an equally accomplished writer of a number of books, essays and magazine articles on fishing and was a frequent contributor to Field and Stream.

As a sportsman, Tap was an acclaimed expert trout fisherman who tied his own flies. He fished both freshwater and saltwater venues throughout the US and around of world. He also was a capable and savvy hunter.

Tap was a successful and much beloved teacher. He taught English and social studies for many yeas at Concord (Massachusetts) High School. For the past 25 years he taught writing, first at Emerson College and then at Clark University. Although he was fully engaged in his writing career, he still made time to teach his craft to aspiring writers.

Tap never stopped finding ways to compete athletically, enjoying pick up basketball games and Saturday morning touch football games with friends and family.

An apt description of Tap was offered by his wife, Vicki Stieffel, in his obituary, which appeared in the Boston Globe on July 31:

"Bill was a complicated man, infinitely interesting. In our eighteen years together we were never bored with each other. He's a Yankee to the bone, yet he was not a confined thinker. He was a broad, deep thinker."

In addition to his wife Vicki, Tap is survived by his son Michael; two daughters, Melissa and Sarah; two stepsons, Blake and Ben; and his mother and sister.

----RAND GESING, '62