William Ellsworth Cromer

Published 9:32 am Monday, January 14, 2013

William Ellsworth (Bill) Cromer died Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013.

He was born July 1, 1916 in Findlay, Ohio, the son of H. Fred and Alpha Radebaugh Cromer. He graduated from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio in 1938 and began his career at the General Electric Co. in finance and accounting. He was a member of the traveling auditor staff and a financial manager in the Jet Engine Div. After 21 years he left G.E. for financial officer positions with Kaman Corp. and the East Ohio Gas Co., a subsidiary of the Consolidated Natural Gas Co.

Bill became the controller and chief financial officer for the National Office of the Boy Scouts of America in 1969 and retired to Flat Rock, N.C.

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In 1982 and for the last 10 years he lived at Tryon Estates in Columbus.

Bill loved sports, music, the theatre and he loved to sing. He was the center on the Miami University basketball team and sang in the Miami Glee Club.

He sang for over 70 years in church choirs, was a member of barbershop choruses, the Cincinnati Orpheus Society, and sang with the Hendersonville Chorale and the Carolina Chamber Singers.

He was the valedictorian of his Findlay High School class of 1934, treasurer and then vice president of his Phi Kappa Tau fraternity, president of the Miami senior class, and a member of Phi Eta Sigma, Omicron Delta Kappa, Delta Sigma Pi and Beta Alpha Psi honorary societies. He was also president and a member of the Miami Alumni Association Board.

Bill was president of the Raritan Valley Chamber of Commerce in New Jersey, vice president of the Rocky River, Ohio Kiwanis Club and of the downtown Kiwanis Club of Cincinnati, Chairman of the Civitan Foundation of Hendersonville and President of the Cincinnati chapter of the GE Elfun Society.

He was listed in Who’s Who in America and was a member of the Second Wind Hall of Fame, having served as Treasurer of Historic Flat Rock, a member of the Hendersonville Symphony Board and of the Advisory Board of Brevard Music Center.

In addition to choir singing he was a trustee and deacon of several churches  including the Congregational Church of Tryon where he was a member and the First Congregational Church of Hendersonville where he was an associate member.

Bill was predeceased by Betty Anne Schiewetz Cromer whom he met at Miami while she was a freshman and he a senior. They were married Dec. 28, 1940 and Betty returned for her final semester at Miami, graduating in 1941.

His career relocated his family numerous times in twelve cities in six states before retiring to Flat Rock, N.C. with Betty handling the moves including re-schooling the children. They had three children: William E., Jr. (Lucia) of Germantown, Tenn., Carol Cromer Anson (now deceased) of Lithopolis, OH, and Kenneth Richard of Greensboro, GA. They have five grandchildren, Julie Cromer Young (Alan), Hollen Cromer Mitchell (Lance), Katherine Cromer Brock (Bradley), Peter R. Anson (Emily),  Andrew F. Anson (Meghan); and four great-grandchildren, Liana Anson, Levi Anson, Jack Anson and Will Young.

A memorial service will be held at a later date.

Memorials may be made to the Congregational Church, P.O. Box 1367, Tryon N.C. 28782, the First Congregational Church, 1735 Fifth Ave. W. Hendersonville, N.C. 28739, the Hendersonville Symphony Orchestra, 538 N. Main St., Hendersonville N.C. 28792, or the Miami University Endowment Fund, 725 E. Chestnut St, Oxford, Ohio 45056.

An online guest register is available at www.mcfarlandfuneralchapel.com.