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Farming Rural 18

William Gene Tenney

June 7, 1933 ~ April 27, 2020 (age 86)


William Gene Tenney died April 27, 2020.

    Born June 7, 1933 in his grandparents' farmhouse in French Creek, West Virginia, Bill began his education in a two-room schoolhouse in the sawmill town of Ellamore, West Virginia,         something he always was proud to tell people.

     He graduated in 1951 from Barberton High School, where he excelled in four different sports. He is a member of the Barberton City Schools Academic Hall of Fame and throughout his life remained a proud Magic, reuniting with classmates in recent years at monthly lunches. After high school, Bill joined the Ohio National Guard and was called to active duty with the U.S. Army during the Korean War. He used his G.I. bill to attain a bachelor's degree in Education at the University of Akron where he met Sally Clements. He earned a master's degree at Kent State University and his tenure as an educator with the Akron Public Schools included teaching at Perkins Junior High School, principal at Jennings Junior High School and Firestone High School, and Executive Director of Secondary Education. After retiring, Bill continued to influence educators all over Ohio as adjunct professor at Ashland University, conducting hundreds of graduate credit workshops. 

     Bill truly enjoyed traveling and visiting historical sites and National Parks. He and Sally went to all 50 states in the U.S. and many foreign countries. He fished in Alaska and saw the Berlin Wall.

     He was a legendary storyteller, enjoyed many friendships and most of all, Bill loved and was proud of his family. He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Sally; his children, Patricia and Michael Salemi, Scott and Lisa Tenney, Steven Tenney, John and Cheryl Tenney; grandchildren, Diana and Eddie Ward, Joe Salemi, Kristina Apollonio, Gina and Derek Kilberg, Dustin Ollerdisse, Alyssa and Joe McCloud, Emily Tenney, James Tenney, Will Tenney, Bailey Tenney, Michelle Tenney, Camille Tenney; great-grandchildren, Tyler, Ella, Jesse, Rylan, Nathan, Hunter, Michael, Paxtyn, Aubriannah and Hayes; sisters, Karen Tenney and Sande (David) Rangel; and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his father, Clete M.; stepmother, Kathryn Tenney; mother, Leola Ward Castro; sister, Alice Martin and grandson, Jesse Ollerdisse.

     Bill will be interred at the Ohio Western Reserve National Cemetery. A celebration of his life will be held at a later date. Memorials may be made to Summit Metroparks or the Unitarian Universalist Church of Akron. Services in care of The Billow Funeral Homes & Crematory, 85 N. Miller Road, Akron, OH 44333.  (Billow FAIRLAWN Chapel)


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