Willis “Bill” Grant Hill, 84, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, November 9, 2021 at the Granite VNA Hospice House, Concord, surrounded by loved ones.
Born in Manchester, NH to George and Lucinda (Partridge) Hill in 1937, Bill grew up in Brookline, MA and Concord, NH with his five siblings. An honorably discharged veteran, Bill enlisted in the Navy in 1955 where he served on the USS Randolph. In his off hours on the ship, he was the Radio DJ, delighting in playing his favorite jazz tunes to 3000 of his closest shipmates. He studied voice at Berklee Academy in Boston, although he would say, if he were smart, he’d have studied piano. In 1976 he returned to college to obtain his Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from UNH and went on to become a child support advocate, then a social worker for the CETA program at Southern NH Services. A lifelong Democrat, Bill campaigned voraciously for many local and federal candidates in the 70s and 80s. Bill attended every Jazz Festival in Portsmouth since its inception in 1983 and was a great supporter of local music and introduced his family to new artists at every opportunity. His quiet ways and steadfast dedication to his family will live on in all of us.
Bill led a modest, humble life filled with good humor and optimism. His many nieces, nephews, and cousins brought him great joy. His love of family surpassed his love of music, but only by a little. The kids and cousins all have many cherished memories of family camping trips, trekking up and down mountains across New England, riding ten speeds and large family gatherings. Bill brought the music to every event.
Bill was blessed with a large, close and loving family. He is predeceased by his siblings, Betsy Roberts, George Hill Jr, and Edward Hill. He is survived by his sisters, Ruth Chiasson and Barbara Dugan; his son, Richard Hill and wife Coleen; his daughter, Lisa Shechter and husband David; and his three beautiful granddaughters, Heather Hill, Danielle Lessard, and Rebecca Young, all of whom were his favorites.
The family is very grateful for the support and loving care the staff at the Granite VNA Hospice House gave to Bill and all of us during his stay.
Arrangements: A Graveside Service will be held at Millwoods Cemetery, Route 114, South Sutton, NH on Saturday, November 13 at 1 P.M. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Bill’s name to the Seacoast Jazz Society, PO Box 49, Durham, NH 03824 or the Granite VNA Hospice House, 240 Pleasant Street, Concord, NH 03301. Assisting the family with arrangements is the Cremation Society of NH, Manchester. To view Willis's Online Tribute, send condolences to the family, or for more information, visit www.csnh.com.