The world lost a wise soul last Monday morning when William (Bill, Bimby) Smolinski, age 84, passed away in Santa Barbara. Bill is remembered fondly by all who knew him, especially his five daughters and ten grandchildren.
Bill grew up in Solvay, New York, the oldest of four boys to William A. Smolinski and Gertrude (Maltby). His life took him to many different places: from New York, to Wisconsin, to a military base in Germany; from Kinnelon, New Jersey, to sunny Santa Barbara. Everywhere he went, he brought his charming demeanor, his insightfulness, and his wonderful, deep laughter. He had many stories to tell us, accrued over a long and interesting life, like the time he snuck into the Superbowl with a forged press pass; stories that could make anyone smile. Bill was witty and smart, and he loved to share his humor.
Bill was a bright student and a star baseball and basketball player. He graduated from Syracuse University in the early 1950’s with a degree in chemical engineering. After serving in the army, he worked for Johnson’s Wax in the famous Frank Lloyd Wright towers in Racine, WI. He then moved on to positions in advertising, marketing and sales in Montclair, NJ and Detroit, MI. Bill was well served to do this – he could talk to just about anybody in the whole world. He worked hard at every job, and approached each one with his characteristic cleverness. The last years of his life were joyfully spent in retirement at Villa Caridad. He soaked up the California sun each day in his easy chair by the window, surrounded by his daughters, grandchildren and friends.
Bill has left a deep impact on those who had the pleasure of knowing him. We hope that during this difficult time you will keep Bill and his family close to your heart. Listen to some classic jazz, read a newspaper, tell a good joke or eat something scrumptious and remember his life with laughter and joy – just the way he would have wanted us to.
Surviving are his beloved daughters Kate Smolinski (Andrew Vesper) of Santa Barbara with their children Emily, Brian and Audrey; Helen Smolinski (Blue Inquito) of San Francisco with their twins Jerzy and Betta; Mary deLoe (Bob) of Goleta with their children Sammy and Billy; Amy Smolinski of San Francisco; and Suzanne Winchester (Don) of Denver with their children Matthew, Michael and Joseph.
A memorial will be held this summer in Syracuse, NY.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Foodbank of Santa Barbara or St. Vincent’s Heart.