William Coleman Gross, 92, of Apalachin, NY, passed away peacefully on May 15, 2020. He was predeceased by his wife of 62 years, Barbara Gross, and parents, Maynard and Margaret Gross of Freemansburg, P.A.
In 1946, after graduating from Liberty High School in Bethlehem, PA, Bill enlisted in the Navy where he served aboard the USS Missouri until his honorable discharge in 1951.
After leaving the Navy, Bill enrolled in Lafayette College, in Easton PA, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering. It was also at Lafayette that Bill met the love of his life, Barbara Newman, of Phillipsburg, NJ. In 1955, Bill graduated with honors, winning the American Institute of Electrical Engineers prize.
That same year, Bill and Barbara were married and moved to Endicott NY, where Bill started a career with IBM as an electrical engineer. During his time at IBM, Bill was a highly respected problem solver and technical quality leader, achieving the level of STSM (Senior Technical Staff Member). As the site Quality Functional Manager, Bill was a significant figure in IBM Endicott's circuit board mission during the 1970s and 1980s, ensuring that Endicott's circuit boards, which were included in IBM's largest mainframe computers at that time, met the high level of quality that was a hallmark of IBM's products.
One of the things that Bill loved best about life was fishing. He was a skilled and competitive fisherman, who spent many hours fishing with his friends Don Serafin and Bob Jenkins. In the summer months, he enjoyed fishing for rainbow trout on the Delaware River and in the winters, he loved to fish for steelheads on the ice of the Salmon River in Pulaski.
With his wife Barbara, Bill was also very active in the local antiques scene. He especially loved buying, restoring, and selling 19th century oil and hanging lamps. Bill and Barbara made many wonderful friends through their love of antiques.
In later years, Bill became a devoted caregiver to Barbara, who suffered from Alzheimer's disease. Even after Barbara moved to the memory care units at the United Methodist Homes Hilltop Campus, Bill was a daily presence, showering her with love and attention until her death in 2017.
Bill also loved gardening, the Yankees, playing the slot machines at Tioga Downs, and dogs. He will be deeply missed by his family and friends.
Bill is survived by his children; Karen Gross of Augusta, ME, and Holly Gross of Rhinebeck, NY; sister Lucille Marshall (Donald Marshall) of Allentown, PA; brother-in-law David Newman (Joanne Bytner) of Waterbury Center, VT; and several cousins, nieces and nephews.
Bill's family would like to thank the staff of the James G. Johnston Memorial Nursing Home at Hilltop for giving Bill such kind and loving care in his last days. He was truly blessed to be in the company of people who knew and loved him.
Burial will be at the convenience of the family. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in Bill's name to your favorite charity.
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