Bill O. Gardner, 84, died Wednesday, December 15, 2010 surrounded by his loved ones. Bill was born May 18, 1926 in Los Angeles, California. He attended Los Angeles Polytechnic High School, class of Summer 1943. Just prior to graduation he enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps. He trained in Biloxi, Mississippi and was discharged in November of 1945. Bill returned to Los Angeles and attended Metropolitan High School to receive his high school diploma. He worked as a cabinet maker at Lockheed Aircraft where he worked installing cabinets on their Constellation airplanes.
One of Bill’s passions in life was high school football. In the mid-1960s, Bill met Florene Nickell at a Crescenta Valley High School football game. He admired her that evening for sitting in the rain for the whole game as she watched her son play football. Bill and Florene were married in February of 1971.
Shortly after the 1971 earthquake, Bill went to work for a wholesale hardware supplier, covering Central California. Because of the extent of his territory, he and Florene moved to Vacaville, California where Bill eventually retired. During this period of time, they adopted and raised Florene’s grand-daughters Sarah and Amber, the children of Florene’s deceased daughter, Teresa. Bill and Florene were avid high school boosters, attending football and basketball games, as well as supporting the girls’ choirs and swimming teams.