COLONIE - William Joseph Dickerson, Jr. (Maj. USAF ret), 76, passed away on Sunday, February 12, 2017 at home. Born in Albany on April 19, 1940, he was the son of the late William Joseph Dickerson, Sr. and Mary J. Coughlin Dickerson. He was a graduate of Vincentian Institute, Class of '58 and of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Class of '62, majoring in Geology.
After graduation he began working for Pan American Petroleum Company in New Orleans, LA. After about six months there, he received word from the draft board in Albany. He decided then that he would enlist in the Air Force, rather than be drafted into the Army, and did that in February, 1963, receiving his commission as a 2nd Lieutenant in May, 1963. He served at McGuire AFB in New Jersey; Saigon and Nakhon Phanom, Thailand, in 1965-66; and Stewart AFB in Newburgh from November 1966 to September 1967. After leaving active duty, he served in the Air Force Reserve until 1985, retiring with the rank of Major.
From 1967-69 Bill took advantage of the G.I. Bill and spent two years at R.P.I. doing graduate work in Geology. In 1969 he joined the NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation, working as an Associate Geologist, then as a Hearing Officer and, finally, retiring in 1995 as Acting Chief Administrative Law Judge. He then started his own consulting business, which he continued for many years.
On October 29, 1966, Bill married Mary Lou Kuehn. His wife of fifty years survives him, as do his beloved children, William J. Dickerson III (Joanna) of Niskayuna; twin daughters, Catherine M. (John Thompson) of Bangor, ME and Jennifer L. (Christopher Dunn) of Colonie; Elizabeth A. Hartkern (Michael) of Watervliet; and Michael T. Dickerson of Cohoes. He also leaves his treasured grandchildren, Conor J. and Claire C. Thompson and Nathan M. and Andrew W. Hartkern. Bill is also survived by his brother, Robert F. Dickerson (Lt.Col. USA ret) (Mary) of Buffalo, a nephew, Maj. Robert W. Dickerson USA, and two nieces, Patricia L. Penetar and Lauren E. Dickerson.
Bill was a man of great integrity and loyalty, loyalty to his God, to his family, to his country. May he rest in peace.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 12 noon Saturday at St. Kateri Tekakwitha Church, 1803 Union St., Schenectady, NY 12309. Calling hours will be held at New Comer Funerals & Cremations, 181 Troy Schenectady Rd., Watervliet, NY 12189 on Friday from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. Burial will follow the Mass at St. Agnes Cemetery in Menands, NY.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorial contributions be made to the Disabled American Veterans, P.O. Box 14301, Cincinnati, OH 45250-3501 or online at Click To Donate
or to the Adirondack Council, 103 Hand Ave. #3, Elizabethtown, NY 12932 Click To Donate
in memory of Bill.