Eight Bells: William Poole
Published on May 19th, 2021
William Whipple Poole died May 13, 2021 in Falmouth, ME. He was 98.
Bill grew up in Portland, started his studies at Dartmouth College, and joined the U.S. Army in 1943 to serve in the European Theater in the 158th Combat Engineering Unit of Patton’s Third Army. He fought at the Battle of the Bulge and participated in the crossing of the Rhine River.
Bill returned to Dartmouth in 1947, joined the Theta Delta Chi fraternity and graduated in 1948. He remained a lifelong supporter of his schools, fraternity, and his military unit. In 2011, he self-published his memoir, “My Experience in the US Army during World War II- 1943 to 1946”.
After the War, Bill joined his father Parker Poole Sr. at the W.H. Shurtleff Company, a wholesale distributor of salt and chemicals, on Union Wharf. With his brother Parker Poole Jr. and his nephews, Malcolm and Charlie Poole grew the Shurtleff Company to a New England-wide supplier and the Union Wharf property to a centerpiece of Portland’s working waterfront.
Bill’s passion for sailing extended to volunteerism, becoming a judge and official for US Sailing and their Match Racing Championships, and being chosen as an alternate judge for the America’s Cup. Bill was a long-term member of the Portland Yacht Club, past president of Northeast Sailing Association, and former US Sailing board member.
In addition to his wife Dana, Bill is survived by his Poole nephews and nieces and their spouses, Malcolm and Patti Poole, Parker Poole III and Diane Schinella Poole, Charles and Elizabeth Poole, Christina Poole Thomas and Henry Thomas, Alexandra Poole Sawyer, and Mark Sawyer; and 19 great-nieces and nephews. Bill will be fondly missed by many dear friends.
A memorial service honoring Bill’s life will be held June 15 at 11 a.m. at State Street Congregational Church, 159 State St., Portland.
In lieu of flowers, donations to Portland Stage Company, Sail Maine or Friends of Casco Bay would be deeply appreciated.