William Gosnell 1931-2019
GOSNELL William Francis Gosnell, 87, of Upper Arlington, passed away at home Sunday, January 20, 2019, after a long illness. He was preceded in death by his parents, Dr. Francis and Katherine Gosnell and his sister, Mariana Gosnell. He is survived by his wife, Norma L. Gosnell, son, Scott Gosnell, sister, Molly Rudy, sister-in-law Irma Pinkerton and brothers-in-law Bill (Gayle) and Jack (Sophie) Hall. He was a devoted uncle to his nephews and nieces, Doug, Steve, and Kathy; Jimmy, Tommy, Shirley, Silvia, Kelly, Karen, Steve, Cathy, Danielle and Kim; their spouses and partners; and a great-uncle to his many grand nephews and nieces.
William was a 1949 graduate of Upper Arlington High School. He went on to receive both his Bachelors and Masters of Arts from the Ohio State University. He served two years in the United States Marine Corps during the Korean War before resuming his studies. Following college, he taught History, Government, Psychology and Sociology for forty-two years at Northland High School, and was awarded Teacher of the Year in 1993. He was constantly amazed and delighted to see his students grow and develop as people.
William met his wife Norma when both became members of the recently opened Swim and Racquet Tennis Club; they would go on to become club champions in mixed doubles, to remain lifelong partners in tennis and in life, to celebrate the birth of their son, Scott, and to celebrate their fiftieth wedding anniversary. He described himself as “a good egg, slightly cracked,” but will be remembered for his kindness, interest in everyone he met, capacity to generate a lecture on any topic at any length at the drop of a hat, boundless curiosity and thirst for knowledge, and his belief in treating everyone among us with dignity and justice. His favorite advice was from the movie Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure: “Be excellent to each other.”
He was a sixty-eight-year member of First Community Church in Marble Cliff, where the memorial service will be held on January 30, 2019 at 11AM, despite his previously stated preference for “a traditional Viking funeral with burning ship and so forth,” “to be set adrift on an ice floe,” or “to be shot bodily into orbit from a large cannon.” We will miss him terribly.
Service will be held in Burkhart Chapel at the South Campus of First Community Church, 1320 Cambridge Ave. 43212, at 11AM, January 30, 2019. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the educational charity of your choice.