William “Bill” Maxham Edwards

| May 3, 2016

OBIT PICCOSHOCTON – William “Bill” Maxham Edwards, 79 of Coshocton, OH, died in his sleep, April 19, 2016, in Fort Myers, Florida, having fought a valiant battle with pancreatic cancer for 4 years.

Bill was born April 22, 1936, in DuQuoin, IL, the son of Gilbert (Doc) and Jean (Maxham) Edwards.  He grew up in Pinckneyville, IL, and then attended the University of Illinois where he received both bachelors and master’s degrees in agricultural science.  Bill then moved to Ames, Iowa, where he earned a PHD in Agronomy from Iowa State University.   In 1963 he married Ruth Buttermore, who survives.

Bill was a veteran of the US Army where he served in Germany.  He became passionate about all things German and took his family to spend a year in Germany where he worked as a scientist at the University of Goettingen.  This love of Germany led not only to travel, but to the family hosting two German exchange students:  Christian Bechtloff of Hamburg, and Rahel “Rachel” Brecht of Uslar.

He was employed as a soil scientist for the USDA, in Coshocton, Ohio, from 1967 till he retired in 1995.  While working at the North Appalachian Experimental Watershed, he helped in the development of “No Till” farming and led research in measuring pollutants in ground water and rain water run-off.

He was an avid coon hunter and outdoorsman and loved to watch coon dogs and beagles perform.  He collected Indian rocks, enjoyed Sudoku, crossword puzzles, reading and travel.  He was a member of Grace United Methodist Church in Coshocton, OH, and sang in the Chancel Choir.  He played trombone in the Rube Band, Coshocton Community Band, Lake Park Big Band, and in the orchestra for musicals at the Footlight Players.  He was a former member of the Coshocton Community Choir and sang with the Triple Locks Barbershop Quartet.  He was involved with the Fort Myers Champion Trivia Team NALB, (No Adults Left Behind) and really looked forward to the Monday evening competitions.

In his retirement he loved to help people who needed help.  He helped farmers, neighbors, and others.  He was also a volunteer at the Pomerene Center for the Arts, Clary Gardens, and his church.  Assuming the role of Captain on the Ohio Erie Canal boat, the Monticello II, gave him the opportunity to meet and talk with people from around the world.

Bill took solo trips with his pick-up and a coon dog to explore areas in the northern parts of the U.S. and Canada.  He was always striving to learn how others lived and worked.

He was preceded in death by his parents and two sisters:  Eleanor Jane Johnson of San Francisco and Mary Ruth Caldwell of Dallas, and his beloved niece Allison Wright of Des Moines.   Surviving in addition to his wife, Ruth are children; Elizabeth Ann “Libby” Payne of Fort Myers, Jennifer Jean Walker and her husband Kevin of Fort Myers Beach, FL, Paul Gilbert Edwards and his wife Kari of Fort Myers Beach, FL; sister  Martha Ann Edwards of Chicago, IL; grandchildren Ellie Gressman, Kayla Ruth Walker and McKenzie Jean Walker.  He is also survived by numerous nieces and nephews.

The Fort Myers Memorial Gardens Funeral Home has been entrusted with the care of Bill.  A memorial service will be held on Saturday,May 7th, 11:00 am, at the Grace United Methodist Church in Coshocton.  Friends may greet the family two hours before the service, in the church parlor.

In lieu of flowers his family suggests contributions can be made to organizations that had Bill’s heart: Grace United Methodist Church, Pomerene Center for the Arts, Clary Gardens, or charities of your choice.

Category: Obituaries

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