Obituary and Condolences

William R. "Bill" Clarke

January 10, 1942 October 15, 2017
William R. "Bill"  Clarke
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Obituary for William R. "Bill" Clarke

William R. “Bill” Clarke, 75, of Iowa City, died Sunday, October 15, 2017 at University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics.

The family will greet friends to celebrate Bill’s life Friday, from 4:00 to 7:00 pm, at The Kirkwood Room, 515 Kirkwood Avenue in Iowa City. A time for sharing will begin at 6:30 pm.

The family kindly asks that in lieu of flowers and plants, that memorials be directed to the Friends of the Animal Center Foundation.

Bill was born in Lava Hot Springs, ID, to Marguerite and William R. Clarke. His brother Terrell was born 2 years later. The family moved to Coquille, OR, where he attended high school and met Shirley.

After high school, Bill attended the University of Oregon in the mathematics program and was a member of the marching band. Shirley joined him at the university and they soon married and had their son William. In 1964, they moved to Iowa City to attend the graduate program at the University of Iowa, and here their daughter Kelley was born. Iowa City would become his and Shirley’s life-long home.

Bill was a lover of the outdoors. He and Shirley traveled the US backpacking in such places as the Appalachian Trail, Isle Royale, the Grand Canyon and most special to them, the Tetons. They also took several horseback trips into the Canadian Rockies. Bicycling and camping in Iowa and Wisconsin were yet another favorite get away.

A lover of animals and wildlife, Bill most loved their English Mastiffs and cats. He was also a music lover, ranging from opera to jazz. Recently, he was introduced to Alexa (Echo), re-opening his access to music, and enrichening his final year.

Bill’s professional family played a big part in his life. Performing good science and work that made a difference in people’s lives were core values for him. He was recognized for his honesty, integrity, empathy, and genuine concern for doing the right things to help colleagues, friends and collaborators. He often expressed how important working with his students was, and the joy that it brought him.

His contributions to the University of Iowa spanned 1969-2015, conducting research and teaching in Biostatistics, Preventive Medicine and Environmental Health, and the College of Public Health. He authored and co-authored over 125 peer-reviewed publications, received the College of Public Health Faculty Research Award in 2001, and the Faculty Service Award in 2015.

On Nov 14, 2014, the 25th anniversary of the Clinical Trials Statistical Data Management Center, Bill was honored for his outstanding leadership and service to the University of Iowa. He was associate director for the center from 1989-2000 and director from 2000-2010.

Bill was excited to become a grandfather in 1990 when grandson Braden arrived. He and Shirley took advantage of the opportunity to visit Arizona regularly passing on their love of the outdoors, camping and horseback riding.

In 2012, the family grew again when son Bill married Jill Eyman, long time friends becoming family. Bill was thrilled, and warmly embraced the Eymans as members of his family.

Bill is survived by his wife Shirley; son Bill (Jill) Clarke of San Jose, California and daughter, Kelley Clarke of Tiffin; grandchildren, Braden Clarke of Scottsdale, Arizona and Madeline Sammet and Samantha Sammet, both of California and a brother Terrell (Nancy) Clarke of Oregon and numerous nieces and nephews.

Bill was preceded in death by his parents.

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Previous Events





4:00 PM 10/20/2017 4:00:00 PM - 7:00 PM 10/20/2017 7:00:00 PM
The Kirkwood Room at Governor's Ridge

515 Kirkwood Avenue
Iowa City, IA 52240

A time of sharing will begin at 6:30 pm

The Kirkwood Room at Governor's Ridge
515 Kirkwood Avenue Iowa City 52240 IA
United States

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