William A. Piltz, Jr.October 27, 1917 ~ January 6, 2017 (age 99)
William August Piltz, Jr., died on January 6, 2017, at the age of 99, at Masonic Village, Elizabethtown, following a prolonged illness. He was born on October 27, 1917 in Philadelphia, where he attended Frankford High School. There he excelled in sports, academics, and leadership, graduating with honors in 1936, as president of his class.
Bill was always interested in how things functioned and what uses they could have. Excelling in science and mathematics, Bill went to Drexel University, majoring in Chemical Engineering. After graduating in June 1943, Bill married his childhood sweetheart, Clair Ward Habel, who preceded him in death by five months. Shortly after the marriage, he enrolled in the US Army as a Second Lieutenant, and was assigned to a team in Akron, Ohio, working on the formula for synthetic rubber.
Discovering how chemicals change in polymers, a new idea in the 1940’s played a defining role in Bill’s life’s work. First for Permacel (a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson) and then Coated Products, both in New Jersey, and finally founding Adhesive Research in York, PA in 1960, Bill pioneered processes for pressure sensitive adhesives used in industrial label stock For AR, the subsidiary of Topflight Inc., Bill traveled extensively worldwide, setting up adhesive coating companies as divisions of Topflight. He retired from AR in 1983, at the age of 66.
For many years, his wife and he traveled worldwide. They were also active for many years in the Springettesbury Lions Clubs. Retirement gave him time to pursue and enjoy his third love, golf, at the Hanover Country Club, Abbottstown, PA. Bill also enjoyed gardening and playing bridge.
Bill is survived by two daughters; Sharlene Zagozewski, of Southbury, CT and Karen Speelhoffer of Elizabethtown, PA and a son, Karl Piltz, of York, PA and the South Pacific Islands. He had six grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.
The last few years of their lives, Bill and Claire lived at Juniper Village, Mount Joy, where he constantly entertained others with stories of his adventures. Bill was a great friend and motivated those he met to “think outside the box”, before it was popular to do so. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him.
A Memorial Service for both Bill and Claire will be held at 2 PM on Sunday, March 26, 2017 at Juniper Village, 607 Hearthstone Lane, Mount Joy, PA 17552. Arrangements have been entrusted with the Miller-Finkenbinder Funeral Home & Crematory, 130 North Market Street, Elizabethtown, PA 17022, 717-367-1543.
Memorial contributions may be made in Bill’s honor to Masonic Village Hospice, One Masonic Drive, Elizabethtown, PA 17022.
Condolences and memories may be shared at www.MillerFuneralHome.com