William Leo Harding, 79, passed away on 16 June, 2018 in Webster, Texas. A native of Danielson, CT and a longtime resident of Galveston, TX, he graduated from Norwich University in 1961. As a US Army helicopter pilot, he flew in Korea, Berlin and in Pleiku, Vietnam with the 119th Assault Helicopter Co. (CROCS). He flew 500 hours in armed Hueys in support of special forces. Upon his return to the states, he flew for New York Helicopters, where he once flew then Senator Bobby Kennedy on a tour of NYC. He also flew for Petroleum Helicopters Inc. (P.H.I.) servicing gulf oil rigs and overseas operations in Ecuador, Indonesia and Saudi Arabia. His last piloting job was flying for Hermann Hospital’s brand new Life Flight program in 1976. Afterwards, he joined UTMB where he worked until his retirement in 1999 as the manager for the Alumni Field House. Bill was a world class and nationally ranked long distance runner. Bill has running accomplishments too numerous to count. He ran countless 5K and 10K races, twenty marathons, eight 50 milers and four 100 mile Ultras. He also qualified for the Boston Marathon where he finished in 3:22. For the past 14 years he has suffered from a rare neurological condition: Guillain-Barré Syndrome (GBS).
He is survived by his son, Michael A. Loomis III and wife Veronica; granddaughters, Ruby and Scarlett Loomis; sister, Deborah Baribeau and husband Ronald; niece, Jayne Haythe; nephew, Ronald Baribeau Jr. and wife Holly; great nephews, Crawford and Sean Haythe, Alec and Yianni Baribeau.
A gathering of friends and family will be held from 5-7PM Thursday 28 June, 2018 at J. Levy & Termini Funeral Home, 2128 Broadway, Galveston, Texas 77550. Please come share your memories and stories about Bill. Military honors will be held at 6:00PM. For those who wish to make online condolences, please go to www.jlevyfuneralhome.com.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to your local animal shelter.