Born in New York and raised in the Seattle/Puget Sound area, William Hanley Ryan ’59 maintained a lifelong passion for learning—particularly history, literature and philosophy. He attended the University of Washington, Santa Clara University, and Seattle University. He served as a naval officer during the Vietnam War era, and earned a prize medal for his essay “My Freedoms and My Responsibilities.” After his military service, Bill managed both for-profit and non-profit organizations in the Seattle area, including enterprises engaged in foreign trade, real estate investments, charitable giving and manufacturing. In the mid 1990s he moved to New England where Bill was active in financial and accounting management for several businesses up and down the Maine Coast, where he would have preferred to spend all his time on his sailboat “The Ivy Crown.” In retirement he volunteered at College Guild, providing correspondence courses in writing and poetry to incarcerated persons. Bill could build anything with his hands, and did, from drystone walls, to a complete house, to sturdy and elegant pieces of furniture. He was comfortable around horses, both in the stalls and on their backs, had a smooth tennis backhand and a deep knowledge of Irish history that was exceeded only by his pride in his ancestry. A discerning reader, writer (of fiction, non-fiction and published poetry), and a passionate lover of music from classical to jazz, his motivating credo was “Whatever is worth doing at all is worth doing well.” Bill died on November 7, 2020. He leaves behind his wife, Katy Kline, children and stepchildren, grandchildren, numerous nieces and nephews, and many lifelong friends.


02 Jul 2021