William (BILL) B. Boody
February 27, 1947- April 16, 2022
Bill’s journey began as he was born to Leonard R. Boody and Thelma E. Boody (née Baker) residing in the small railroad town of Rupert, Pennsylvania, just outside the town of Bloomsburg. His brother, Robert, was 20 years his senior. He attended the Rupert One Room Schoolhouse, which remains on display at the Bloomsburg Fair Grounds.
As was somewhat more normal for the time, the days of his pre-teen years were filled with household chores. His home was a large property, the lawn needed to be mowed, weeds pulled, garden tended and chickens fed. Avoiding discipline was the primary motivation. Seasonally, he helped with firewood, and harvesting the field crops. Fortunately, in these days, there was easy access to wide open spaces, and plenty of small game just a short walk from the house. Many stories were told of rushing home from school and taking care of the chores so he could get out in the field for an hour of rabbit hunting or flushing out ringnecks. Bill also tried his hand at little league baseball and discovered that he had a significant talent for the game. Indeed, hunting and baseball would become great passions of Bill’s and continue on throughout his life.
Transitioning to High School, Bill attended the Bloomsburg High School and graduated among the Class of 1966. Along the way, he would find the love of his life, Judith Marie Shuman, of Mainville, PA. While they did attend school together, they would not meet until the “Great Tobogganing incident” during the winter of 1965 when they nearly crashed into each other.
The mid 1960’s was a troublesome time to be a high school graduate. The Vietnam war was boiling, and possibility of a Military Draft was an ever-present concern. Soon after graduating, Bill made the decision to enlist in the Army, with the hopes of being more in control of his own destiny. Basic training began in the Fall of 1966.
On December 2, 1967, Bill and Judith were married. Soon after, the military swept the newlyweds off to Fort Hood in Killeen TX. Bill sought training in weapons support and radar repair. This background in electronics would serve him well as a civilian. Not long after completing his service, he was able to secure a rewarding job as a union repairman and installer for Bell Telephone in southeastern Pennsylvania, CWA Local 13000. Bill was dedicated to his work, and prided himself on delivering quality, attention to detail, and service to his customers.
In early 1974, Bill and Judy were finally able to put down roots in a home of their own, a sturdy brick cape that needed love, on Main Street of Newtown Square, Pennsylvania. Almost immediately, their first child was born, and this house would become the home where 3 children, Chris, Kerry and Karen would grow up. Bill provided well for his family. He worked extra hours when needed. He taught the values of hard work and attention to detail. He was a man of strong tradition and family was important. He coached baseball, was behind the backstop of every softball game, and volunteered his support for 4H. He enjoyed the NFL and Nascar on Sundays, hunting season, and weekend fishing trips. Bill prided himself on keeping the lawn tidy, and his garden was among the most bountiful in the area. Many years, he had a Spring side business, rototilling neighborhood vegetable gardens and flower beds. At the first sign of spring, his phone would begin ringing, the quality of his work and meticulous nature ensured repeat customers.
Bill inherited ownership of a piece of his family land, lovely creek side acreage that his father had once farmed. He had a vision of a family retreat and spent many weekends teaching his children the value of hard work. With the help of his family, and his trusty 1947 Ford 9N Tractor, he battled back against the encroaching underbrush and restored the land to productive fields, and what would become a weekend getaway and summer vacation destination for his family. The lifelong memories of time spent on this land are abundant, as his children learned about the importance of quality family time and unwinding among nature.
Bill was blessed with an early retirement from the Phone company at a time when things were changing fast in the communication world. The sudden life changes during these years were a bit of a lurch, but Bill was able to find enjoyment in keeping the lawns mowed sharp and his fields clean. He always used his dad’s old Ford 9N, patiently idling around the same fields his father once cultivated. He had several Beagle dogs during his retirement, and he spoiled them thoroughly. He also loved to keep track of the local deer population, and nearly every day there was an update about their foraging habits.
Sadly, in the Spring of 2019, Bill’s wife Judy, succumbed to cancer, and the blow was devastating for Bill. They had been married 52 years. Failing health and isolation created by the pandemic each took a toll on him. On April 16, 2022 he took one last afternoon nap, he was 75 years old. He is predeceased by his late father Leonard R. Boody, his mother Thelma (Sally) Boody, his brother Robert and Sister-in-Law Molly Boody, and his wonderful wife Judith M. Boody.
Surviving family are Christopher A. Boody of Newark, DE, Kerry A. Shallis of Coatesville, PA (with Granddaughters Addison and Riley), Karen E. Pentz of Newtown Square, PA (with Husband Stephen and Grandchildren Noël and Collin).
Services will be held at the Emanuel Reformed Church of Mainville; 146 Church Rd. Bloomsburg, PA 17815, Saturday, May 14, 2022 at 10:30am.
The family appreciates your condolences, and would like to suggest a contribution to K9s for Warriors at K9sforWarriors.org in his memory if you are inspired to do so.