Lasting Memories

William D Wagstaffe
Nov. 11, 1922-May 14, 2012
Menlo Park, California

Submitted by Eileen Wagstaffe

Born in Alameda, California, to Harold and Margareta Bergin Wagstaffe and raised on the Peninsula, Bill attended Our Lady of Angels Grammar School in Burlingame, then went on to Bellarmine College Preparatory in San Jose. A graduate of the Class of 1940, he was the first person in school history to work on the newspaper -- the first edition of which came out in 1936 -- all four years of its existence.

After graduating from Menlo College with  the Class of 1942, he went on to attend Stanford University, majoring in business. Immediately following early graduation from the MBA program, he went to the San Francisco enlistment center on Market Street and shipped out to Notre Dame University for Officer Training at the onset of World War II.

Following an assignment at Fisher's Island in New York, he shipped out with the 7th Fleet of the U.S. Navy to the South Pacific, specifically the Philippine Sea frontier to the end of World War II.  One of his happiest memories was returning to San Francisco under the Golden Gate Bridge on the USS Randall and being greeted by his parents at the end of the war.

Following the war, Bill served in the Naval Reserve Officers' Organization at Treasure Island for 29 years until he retired as Captain.  His post-war career flourished at Del Monte Foods in San Francisco, where he worked for 40 years, his final role being Director of Transportation.

His love of education inspired him to accept the position of Professor of Business at the University of San Francisco, St Mary's College, and, more recently, Golden Gate University, where he was the Professor of Operations Management for the last 23 years until he passed away. 

The driving force of his life was his family.  An active member of Old St Mary's Center in San Francisco, he met his future wife, Marjorie Thompson, there and they shared their first date at an East West Shriners football game at Kezar Stadium on New Year's Day 1955. They were married at Old St Mary's on February 11, 1956.

William is survived by his lovely wife of 56 years, Marjorie.  He was the beloved father to five children: Paul (Jennifer), Ann (Jeff), Rosemary (Roger), Skip (Lisa), and Eileen (Jeff).  His twelve grandchildren, Ryan, Perry, Rachel, Julie, Lindsey, Rebecca, Roxanne, William, Tori, Audrey, Jessi, and Ashley will miss their "Papa" tremendously.  Bill will hold a special place in the hearts of his nephews, Steve (Sue), Dennis (Cathy), Jim (Karen), Raymond (Jacque) and niece Gerry, and his many grandnieces and grandnephews.  His passing was preceded in death by his brother Gerard, sister-in-law Jean, sister Clare, and nephew John (survived by Victoria).  

At age 12, a caddy job at the Burlingame Country Club inspired a lifelong love of golf in Bill, which he nurtured for the rest of his life.  Many happy days were spent golfing with his friends and colleagues at Moffett Field, culminating with his first hole in one at age 81.  Counted among his treasured golf events were outings with the San Francisco Transportation Club and the St Mary's Center "Whackers."

He was a whiz at dominoes; playing often with family and friends.  When the 49ers formed in 1946, he was an original season ticket holder and many Sundays were spent with the entire family enjoying the finesse of their favorite football team.

His dry sense of humor was enjoyed by all who knew him. His positive outlook on life will be greatly missed by all whose lives he touched. His family and friends feel blessed to have had his gentle loving spirit in their lives and will always be grateful for the inspiration that he was. 

A funeral mass is scheduled for Friday, May 25, at 11 a.m. at The Church of the Nativity, 210 Oak Grove Avenue, Menlo Park. Burial and reception in Menlo Park will follow. A rosary is scheduled for Thursday, May 24th at 7pm at The Church of the Nativity in Menlo Park.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Bellarmine Alumni Association, Stanford University Alumni Association, Golden Gate University and Ameri