OAK ISLAND — William George “Bill” Blair Jr., 89, passed away Tuesday, Dec. 24, 2019, at his home surrounded by his family. Bill was born Aug. 18, 1930, in Genesee County, Michigan, son of the late William George Blair Sr. and Alice May Winser. He was one of five children and grew up in Flint, Michigan.
He had a successful career as a pharmaceutical representative. In the summer of 1966, Bill was promoted to hospital sales representative with the Richardson-Vicks Corporation (eventually acquired by Merrill Dow Pharmacuticals) and transferred from Westland, Michigan, to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
He was an active member at Mount Lebanon United Presbyterian Church, where he served for many years as a deacon and elder. He became scoutmaster of BSA Troup 193 in support of his son Bill. His scout experiences and the lives he touched in that role are still remembered by his former scouts. He supported his son Mark’s love of baseball by becoming an umpire and league official for several seasons. In 1996, he retired from pharmaceutical sales as a top salesman and moved to Oak Island in 1999.
He loved outdoor activities, was an avid gardener and golfer and longtime member of Oak Island Golf Club. Bill was a volunteer at Dosher Memorial Hospital for 18 years, logging over 1,000 hours. He also volunteered for 16 years with Oak Island Sea Turtle Protection Program as a nest parent and was an active member of the Oak Island Evangelical Presbyterian Church.
Bill was a devoted father and grandfather, loving, caring man who was fortunate to have been married to two of his best friends, Ann from 1956 to 1982 until her passing, and Peg, with whom he was married for the past 35 years.
Preceding him in death were three of his siblings, Betty, Mary and Thelma.
Survivors include his loving wife, Margaret “Peg” Blair of Oak Island; four children, William G. Blair III, and his wife, Cheryl, of Mineral Bluff, Georgia, Mark Blair, and his wife, Connie, of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Robert Balentine, and his wife, Christina, of Rancho Cordova, California, and Janice Lejarza, and her husband, Edward, of Leland; sister, Reta Fagan of Flint, Michigan; six grandchildren, Bethany Ann Blair, William G. Blair IV, Nicholas Blair, Jacob Blair, Adam Balentine and Joseph Balentine; and nieces, Val Ehrman and Carrie Smith.
A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 9, at Peacock-Newnam & White Funeral and Cremation Service Chapel, Southport. Visitation will begin one hour prior to the service.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Bill’s memory to the following groups: Friends of The Sea Turtles, 3003 East Oak Island Drive, Oak Island, NC 28465; Dosher Memorial Hospital, 924 North Howe St., Southport, NC 28461; or Liberty HomeCare and Hospice, 1120 Ocean Hwy W. Suite E, Supply, NC 28462.
Share online condolences with the family at Peacock-Newnam & White Funeral and Cremation Service.