William Paul Strucke
62, Feb. 8th 1959 (Schenectady, NY) - Jan. 10th, 2022, passed away at home in Louisville, OH.
Service: Sat. January 29th at 3pm, Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Monmouth County, Lincroft, NJ.
Donations: In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to a substance-abuse and alcohol addiction charity in your area, or to NPR in his honor.
Predeceased: parents John Paul (1984) and Marjorie (nèe Farina, 2002), brother Frederick (1998) and sister Kathryn (2004).
Survived by: four beloved children, son William (Megan), daughter Michelle (Zakaria), daughter Ann (Christopher) Vallebuona, daughter Krista (Jay), and seven cherished grandchildren: Hermione, Jadzia, Geneviève, Zoon, William, Ellis, and Amedeo. Also by brother John (Dwana), brother Gary, brother Eric (Kelly), ex-wife Laurie, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Born in New York, he grew up on a family farm, learning the value of hard work and falling in love with the vivid sounds and smells of nature. After moving to Newark, then Cranbury, NJ, Billy graduated from Hightstown High School in 1977. He attended both Mercer County and Brookdale Community Colleges and wed his college sweetheart, Laurie Ann (nèe DeBonis) of Hazlet in 1982. They lived in Meriden, CT before settling in Lumberton, NJ to raise their own family.
Bill was an entrepreneur who always took pride in his work, no matter what the task in front of him. In 1983 he founded Handsel Scientific Corporation (HSC) in Freehold, NJ with his father and brothers. They initially imported and sold high power precision microscopes for private research and academia. After mixed success, Bill and his brothers recognized an opportunity and pivoted to cellular phone sales and installation, for a time locking in the regional market. HSC supplied mobile phones to businesses and first responders long before they were commonly available. After the business closed in the early 2000s he continued working with people in sales as long as he was able, eventually finding comfort in the hard work and routine as a grocer. He delighted in how he directly contributed to feeding people at his last job at Kroger in Dublin, Ohio.
Throughout his life he communicated his love and adoration through acts of service, rarely through words. His selfless devotion to his friends and family drove him, often working long hours and striving for perfection in everything he did; he was the most reliable and humble person to touch the lives of many. He cared for sister Kathryn during her long battle with cancer and his mother during her final years.
Bill's proudest achievement was his four children, who he raised to follow their passions as far as they would lead. In his free time he loved working with his hands and could build or create anything he set his mind to. He was thrifty and enjoyed using spare parts and materials to give them new life. He transformed old grocery bags and fishing lines into an animated Halloween wonderland; when he finished gluing a vase broken into smithereens it looked like new. Vegetables thrived under his care, as he fed his family from a backyard garden when times were hard, which they often were. Though he struggled with a lifelong battle with alcohol addiction, he led his life as a survivor, bravely facing brain surgery and traumatic injury with courage.
Bill was an unorthodox thinker, believed in the universality connecting us all, and found awe in nature. He is now free of his afflictions, and we know he will watch over us and this beautiful world from a place of eternal peace and serenity. We love you, Dad.
“...whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy.” - Desiderata. A local Funeral service was held on Friday Jan 21, 2022 with Msgr. Lewis F. Gaetano in the Wackerly Funeral Home.
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