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Sunday, June 29, 2014

Westport Mourns Loss of Bill Meyer, 85

By James Lomuscio

William F. “Bill” Meyer III, the avuncular, ever present cheerleader during announcements at the Representative Town Meeting (RTM), the indefatigable Westport volunteer celebrated town wide last year for his myriad community service roles, a tour de force among seniors and a statewide proponent of the right to die, died tonight after a two year battle with multiple myeloma. He was 85.

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Bill Meyer at a 2010 Y’s Men meeting. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com

Meyer, who in 1994 faced criminal charges, later dismissed, after detailing in a Connecticut Magazine article how he had helped his cancer-stricken father end his own life three years earlier, died at his Westport home, according to First Selectman Jim Marpe.

The 42-year town resident and 18-year RTM member was a descendant of Thomas Hooker, a Congregationalist minister who arrived in Boston in 1633. In keeping with his lineage, he had served as a deacon in the Saugatuck Congregational Church.

He was also a Westport Little League organizer and umpire, so ebullient he was dubbed Umpire Bill. In addition, Meyer was a Native American champion whom the Blackfeet Indians named an honorary chief, a longtime mentor to Westport and inner city students and a member of the Y’s Men group, where he proudly boasted about the number of new members he brought in.

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