ONEONTA – William “Bill” Standish Fairhurst III, chaplain of the Society of Friends (Quaker) of Unadilla, passed away Jan. 5, 2018, at Fox Hospital following a short illness, with loving family members present.
Bill was born in East Orange, N.J., on July 23, 1931. He attended elementary school in Livingston, N.J., and graduated from Rutgers Preparatory School in New Brunswick, N.J. Bill graduated from Syracuse University in 1968 with a bachelor’s degree in sociology. He also attended Bangor Theological Seminary, Bangor, Maine and Colgate-Rochester Divinity School, Rochester.
Bill was ordained in the work of the Christian Ministry by the First Baptist Church of Weedsport on April 16, 1967. He served several American Baptist churches in Millers Mills, Weedsport, Meridian, and Rose, as well as churches in Brooklin, Maine, and Whitefield and Canterbury, N.H. Bill also served as chaplain for Newark Developmental Center and pastor of Poplar Ridge Friends Meeting, as well as Unadilla Friends Meeting.
Bill was a versatile man who was a bookkeeper, store manager for GLF-Agway, a farmer, a shepherd, a builder of houses, a remodeler, and a finish carpenter. He loved his roles of husband, father, grandfather, counselor and pastor, and did them well. He was also a well-read person who enjoyed books on history and biographies of many U.S. presidents. Bill kept up with current events with the many books and magazine articles available.
Bill always lived for others, working to make their lives full, happy, and meaningful. He leaves behind his wife of 67 years, Mary Louise Hart Fairhurst; children, Deborah Cooper, Cynthia Ploutz (Richard), Jennifer Bowdoin (Jimmie), Patricia Fairhurst, William Fairhurst (Wendy); sister, Susan Virginia Johns; grandchildren, Jenevieve, Matthew, Jesse, Jonathan, Jacob, Isaac, Patrick, Hannah, Caleb, Lucas, Tristan, Garrison, William and Ethan; and four great-grandchildren.
A memorial service to celebrate his life will be held in July at the Unadilla Friends Meeting.
In lieu of flowers, donations are requested for the Religious Society of Friends (Quaker) of Unadilla, P.O. Box 232, Unadilla, NY 13849 or the Salvation Army, Church World Service or Hospice.