William Gillian Jr.

SCARBOROUGH – Portland native, William Gillian Jr., 81, passed away peacefully at the Gosnell Hospice House in Scarborough on Nov. 15, 2021.

He was born Sept. 27, 1940 in Portland to William Gilllian Sr. and Ruth Collins Gillian. He attended Deering and Cheverus High Schools and graduated in 1958.

Bill and Sheila McIntyre married in 1959 and moved to Boston where they started a family. He worked full time and attended classes at (B.U.) Boston University. After returning to Portland in 1964, he co-founded Southern Maine Typewriter Company with his father. They later sold the business and he became a top salesman for unique apparel companies such as Playtex, Hang Ten Sportswear and Aspen Skiwear.

Bill was a member of the Knights of Columbus, The Elks Club, and Toastmasters International.

He enjoyed playing sports and coached Little League and Babe Ruth baseball teams. He was a lifelong Boston Red Sox Fan and attended the 1975 and 1986 World Series. Also a New England Patriots fan, he attended Super Bowl XXXIX and was thrilled to see Tom Brady win again.

Bill was the life of the party and had an unforgettable laugh. An avid outdoorsman, he loved hunting, fishing and snowmobiling and had some remarkable stories. On one occasion, while showing his young children how to feed a wild Maine Black Bear, he lost a finger. Luckily it was reattached at a local hospital. On another sunny day, while fishing with friends off the coast of Cape Elizabeth, they encountered 25-foot swells rolling in from the remnants of Hurricane Felix. The boat capsized in the waves and smashed against the rocks. They eventually washed ashore on uninhabited Richmond Island. Rescued by the U.S. Coast Guard, all hands survived. He later commented that it was “the luckiest fishing day of my life”.

As a long-time resident of Cape Elizabeth, he became an avid gardener. He was a seasoned bird watcher and fed the numerous species that stopped by his cottage along the Atlantic Flyway.

He was predeceased by his parents; sister, Dona Kinney and brother, Richard Gillian.

William is survived by his daughter, Carolyn Gillian (partner Richard Wallace), son, William III; granddaughters Stefanie Scala and Angela Mallis all of Portland; his sister, Lisa Poisson of Raymond; and numerous nieces and nephews; and great-nieces and nephews.

His family is forever grateful for the staff at Falmouth by the Sea for their care in the last years of his life.

A gathering for remembrance will be held at the Maine Irish Heritage Center, St. Dominic’s Church, at 34 Gray St., Portland on Sunday Dec. 5, from 1 to 4 p.m.

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