Born on Aug. 31, 1943, to Beverly Angelina Kraemer and William Francis Brennan, William “Bill” Gilbert Brennan ’65 graduated from Mater Dei High School, SCU, and the University of San Diego law school. Throughout his life, Bill put others before himself, played the role of a peacemaker, and always sought to do the right thing. He served in Vietnam as a first lieutenant in the U.S. Army. A gifted athlete and a natural leader, Bill always chose to see the best in each person and to share his natural talents. He loved the competitive spirit of team sports. In high school and in college, he was an all-star catcher in baseball, a receiver in football reported to have had “the best hands in Orange County,” and a former golf champion of the 1989 Kraemer Firecracker Open. Ever the optimist, Bill was thankful for the gift of time during these past two years to continue the work he loved, play poker with his Thursday night regulars, shoot more rounds of golf, support his youngest son’s college crew team and his grandkids’ many sports, take more romantic walks on the beach, dabble in watercolor painting, and body surf until sunset. Most of all, he was grateful for the time to say goodbye to so many he loved. His high school coach and friends, colleagues, and college roommates all made frequent trips to his side to swap stories, laugh, and share their mutual love for a man who had changed many of their lives by simply reaching out and being their friend. Bill practiced law in San Diego County for many years, during which time he enjoyed a unique working friendship with President Ronald Reagan. What began for Bill as a high school internship in the middle of the desert on the TV series Death Valley Days later blossomed into the role of a personal advance man worldwide for Reagan from 1975 through the White House years. On Capitol Hill, he served on the staff of U.S. Senator Pete Wilson, and in Sacramento he served as a deputy cabinet secretary and special counsel for the Business, Transportation, and Housing Agency during Wilson’s terms as governor. For the past 12 years, Bill was executive director of the California New Motor Vehicle Board, and he served as chair of the National Association of Boards and Commissions. He has chaired and been a member of the Century Housing Corporation since 1999, where he enjoyed a special friendship with Judge Harry Pregerson of the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. As a patriot who loved his country and cared about families and veterans who had fallen on hard times, Bill was proud of his work with Century and the Villages at Cabrillo to help homeless veterans. Bill passed away on Nov. 2, 2017, in his daughter Isabel’s home in Vista, California. A dedicated husband, proud father, and loving grandfather, Bill entered gracefully into a world of peace after a two-year battle with an aggressive form of prostate cancer. He is survived by his loving wife of 29 years, Jeanne Winnick Brennan; children Katherine, Bryan, Bill (Michelle), and Bo (Michelle Schwarz) Brennan; Isabel Hinojosa (Roger), Carrie Wilhite (Brad), and Kelly Phillips (Jason); grandchildren Roger Hinojosa, Brennan, Peyton and Dillon Wilhite, Jackie and Josie Phillips, and Breann, Duke, Bandon, and Torrey Brennan. He was especially proud of the beautiful people his children, grandchildren, nieces, and nephews have become. A resident of Sacramento, Bill chose to spend his final weeks in the arms of his large, loving family and friends at his beach home in Oceanside, where he could enjoy the salt air and gorgeous view of dolphins, surfers, and sailboats each day.

08 Nov 2018