Willard Campbell Case '49

Bill Case, our Class president for many years, passed away on Thursday, April 26, 2007, at the Indian River Medical Center in Vero Beach, FL, with his wife, Nancy, at his side.  The cause was congestive heart failure.

Bill was born in 1926 and raised in Rochester, NY.  After enlisting in the army in 1944 and serving in the Pacific, he entered Amherst College with the Class of 1949.  He played football in his freshman year and joined Alpha Delta Phi where he was president in his senior year.

He spent his entire business career with the Case-Hoyt Corporation in Rochester, expanding its commercial printing business whose high quality color lithography became known nationally.  He served as executive vice president and director from 1955-1986.  In 1984, he sold the printing business and retired in 1986.

Throughout his life Bill was a doer, both in business and civic activities. He willingly accepted responsibility and was never satisfied until objectives were achieved.  While in Rochester, he served as director of several organizations including the Community Trust Monroe Saving Bank and the Glendale Hospital.  In Vero Beach, he helped organize a controlled growth organization which later became the Indian River Neighborhood Association.  It is now one of the most influential groups in county elections and has effectively slowed down uncontrolled growth.  Bill was honored in 2006 with a tribute recognizing his efforts on behalf of the association.

One of Bill’s hobbies over the years was golf.  In Rochester, he was a member of the Rochester Country Club and the Genesee Valley Country Club.  In Vero Beach, he was a member of the Bent Pine Country Club where he served as chairman of the membership committee.  Bill was instrumental in my joining Bent Pine when I moved here in 2005.  In recent years, he had limited his golf to nine holes because of respiratory problems and arthritis.  When we played a couple of weeks before he passed away, he said he was afraid he was going to have to give up the game soon because of his physical problems and the frustration of not playing the way he would like to play.  It didn’t, however, slow down his berating himself and the golf ball for not performing the way he wanted.

Bill took real pride in his responsibility as our Class president, a position he held for many years.  At this own expense, he would fly up to Homecoming games at Amherst to join whoever might be there and to attend funerals of fellow classmates when he learned of them.  At the same time, Bill worked as an associate Class agent, joining those who assisted the Class agent in soliciting funds for the College.  All in all, he was a great leader as well as cheerleader for the Class of ’49.

Bill is survived by his wife, Nancy McGee Case, of Vero Beach; two children and three stepchildren.  He was predeceased by a son, Douglas C. Case.  A memorial service took place at the First Presbyterian Church of Vero Beach on May 4, 2007.  Attending the service from our Class were Pete Moyer, our current Class president, and fellow Vero Beach residents Ted Walker, Gerry Reilly, Don Riefler, and myself.

—John Howard ’49