Born on January 29, 1925 he was the only child of Howard B. and Gladys (Walling) Mears of Kingsbury. Following his mother’s death from pertussis in 1932, Elsie M. Engwer of Glens Falls became his very caring step-mother in 1934.
Bill was the fourth generation of his family to live on the family farm in Kingsbury. He attended the district grade school in the hamlet of Kingsbury, and was graduated from Hudson Falls High School in 1942. He then followed an agricultural career, working with registered Holstein-Friesian cattle.
Bill was active in the Washington County 4-H program, as well as the district and state 4-H councils. He also participated in the Grange activities for several years.
Bill married Carol Foote of Fort Edward on April 2, 1949. They lived in Kingsbury until 1957, when they moved to their farm, Mears Meadows, on East Road in Fort Edward. They were active in the Hudson Falls Baptist Church, and later in the Durkeetown Baptist Church.
Bill was also active in several agricultural organizations, including Washington County Farm Bureau, the county Extension Service and the Tri-County Holstein Club. Bill served five years on the Town of Fort Edward Zoning Board of Appeals and thirteen years on the Planning Board. He also received and served on county and state appointments.
For 20 years the Mears herd qualified for the National Holstein Association’s Progressive Breeders’ Registry. As a result, numerous animals were sold and exported to foreign countries including Japan, Canada, France, Hungary, Spain, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador and Venezuela. In 1985 Bill received the New York State Master Breeder’s Award. The Mears Holstein herd was dispersed later that year at public sale with animals going to herds in several states. Bill then worked part-time for five years procuring registered cattle from other herds for export to Iraq, Morocco and countries in Central and South America.
Bill and his wife Carol had time to enjoy several trips throughout our country visiting national parks and Hawaii, as well as Canada and the British Isles. They subdivided and sold Mears Meadows Farm in 1999–the 50th year of their marriage–and then retired to their “first apartment” located in Queensbury. For the past several years they have been members of the Pine Knolls Alliance Church in South Glens Falls.
During his retirement “from the cows” Bill used some of his free time making furniture at his farm shop, and later found a lot of satisfaction refinishing and caning antique chairs. Other interests have included extensive reading and following the Dodgers baseball team since the mid 1930’s.
Bill was predeceased by his wife Carol, his parents, his step-mother Elsie Mears, and a daughter Susan who died at birth in 1950. He is survived by four daughters and their families: Margaret (Peggy) and her husband Mark Godin of South Hamilton, MA with whom he lived the past 4 months, and their children Maggie and her husband Anthony Cabalar and their children Ezekiel and Daniel of Redding, CA, and Jonathan Godin of Seattle, WA; Marcia and her husband David Darsie of Winchester, VA and her sons, Eric Etu and his wife Liza and their daughter Sabine of Walnut Creek, CA, Joshua Etu and his wife Sarah and their children Julia, William and Brendan of Fredericksburg, VA, and Nathan Etu and his wife Cheryl and their daughter Hannah of Amesbury, MA; Sally and her husband Allen Dawson of Herndon, VA and her daughter Rebecca Seifried of Crete, Greece; and Amy Mears-Teitsch and her husband John Teitsch of Salisbury, NC and her son Alex Mears of Alfred, NY; and several cousins.
A service of celebration of Bill’s life will be held on Friday, November 24 at 1:00 p.m. at Christ Church of Hamilton and Wenham, South Hamilton, MA. Bill’s nephew, the Rev. Brian Labosier will officiate. A reception will follow in church’s Preston Cutler Gallery. Cards of remembrance may be sent to the family C/O Peggy and Mark Godin, 50 Plum St, S. Hamilton, MA 01982. An interment service is tentatively planned for Bill and Carol at the Union Cemetery in Fort Edward, NY on the anniversary of their wedding April 2, 2018.