William R. Michaels, 92, of Pequannock, NJ, entered into eternal life to be with his Lord and Savior Jesus, on Sunday, January 9, 2022. Born and raised in Wilkes-Barre, PA, he met the love of his life and dance partner, Betty, and they were wed in 1955. Shortly thereafter they started a family and moved to Hawthorne, NJ before moving to Pequannock, NJ 56 years ago.
William, fondly known as Bill or Billy, was a bi-lingual first generation American and attended Sacred Heart Slovak School and Coughlin High School in Wilkes-Barre. He enlisted in the military and served on the front line as a 1st Lieutenant in the US Army during the Korean War. He returned home as a decorated soldier receiving the Bronze Star Medal with Valor. Through the GI bill, he furthered his education at Kings College. Shortly after college graduation, he was hired by the Upjohn Pharmaceutical Company, where his career, as a distinguished east coast pharmaceutical rep, spanned 33 years.
Bill was a member and past Grand Knight leading the Knights of Columbus Bishop Navagh Council #5943 where he spearheaded breaking ground on what is now known as the Knights of Columbus Hall in Pequannock. He was active in his community, serving on the Township Planning Board Committee and contributed to the development of Chilton Memorial Hospital, Greenview Park and the Industrial Park in town. He was a member of the American Legion Post #242 where he organized representation at parades and wake services for deceased members of the American Legion and Knights of Columbus. He was an usher at Holy Spirit Roman Catholic church for many years.
Bill, a.k.a “Dollar Bill”, helped organize the Pequannock Township Men’s softball league, where he pitched his unique “Dipsy Doodle, Ol Razzle Dazzle” pitch until he was 68 years old. He was an avid golfer and enjoyed playing in the Sunset Valley Golf Course men’s league. He was the number one fan of the Pequannock Township Panthers and loved following the Notre Dame Fighting Irish teams.
If you knew Bill over the years, you may have heard him whistle a tune or sing a song but you certainly heard about his family Christmas Village Display, complete with trains and an action-packed self-narrated story. He loved to share the joy of this family holiday tradition at any hour of the day or night!
Out of all of his accomplishments and activities, what he cherished most in his life, was the importance of “The Family”. He was a pillar of wisdom and taught his children valuable life lessons that will leave a legacy for generations to follow. He was a loyal friend who loved unconditionally and had a wonderful gift of conversation with everyone he met and made them feel welcomed, respected and celebrated. He was a true gentleman who served his God, his family, his country and his community with devotion, dedication and pride.
Bill is lovingly survived by his 5 children: Laurie Jackson, Mary Clare Diehl and her husband Glenn, William Michaels and his wife Cheryl, Tricia Michaels and Robert Michaels; grandchildren: Tyler, Corey, Carley and her husband Jaime, Amy Joy and her husband Fred, Casey, Christy Anna, Bobby and his wife Ashley, Jessey, Aaron and his wife Amy Lynn, Evan and his wife Maria and Emmey Rae; great grandchildren: Carter, Ada, Callan and Max; and granddog Gracey. He is also survived by his sister Ann Sinco, whom he adored, and her husband Michael; nieces and nephews: Michael, Stefan, Jennifer and Jessica; his cousin Bill Stavishak and other cherished family and friends.
He was greeted at heaven’s gate by his beautiful, beloved wife of 60 years, Betty, his parents Stefan and Anna Mihal, stepmother Anna Michaels, brother Emerick Michaels and granddaughter Brittney.
You will always be Our Silent Strength
May you Rest in Paradise Dad… Ľúbim ťa… We Love you more
Due to the recent COVID surge and for the safety of family and friends, there will be no viewing or repast. A memorial celebration for our Dad will be plannedat a future date.
A Funeral Mass will be held at 11:00 a.m. Monday, January 17, 2022. Gathering will begin at 10:30 a.m.
Our Lady of Good Counsel Roman Catholic Church
155 West Pkwy, Pompton Plains, NJ 07444
A live stream of the Funeral Mass will be available. Please refer to their website:
The family will be adhering to Covid safety protocol and recommend that masks be worn.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Bill’s memory can be made to:
Hope For The Warriors
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital
Memorials Processing, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105