William E. Vivian

Born: Sunday, October 1, 1939
Passed: Thursday, March 1, 2018

3/6/2018 | 9:30 AM - 10:50 AM
St. Mark Lutheran Church 

3/6/2018 | 11:00 AM -
St. Mark Lutheran Church 


William "Bill" E. Vivian, 78, of Rockford, passed away on Thursday, March 1, 2018 in his home. Born on October 1, 1939 in Detroit, Michigan the son of William J. and Alma A. (Dierolf) Vivian. Bill met Marilyn Staber when they were 14 years old at Taylor Lake in Holly, Michigan; ended up going to Cooley High School in Detroit together and dating. They wed at the age of 19 on April 18, 1959 in Detroit. Bill worked for Tandy Leather Co. for many years becoming the youngest Manager and moving up to Regional Manager. Bill and Marilyn moved to Grand Rapids, MI, Indianapolis, IN, and settling in Rockford he went to work for Anderson Automotive, finishing his career in Fort Meyers , FL at the Infinity Dealership and was known as the "Velvet Hammer". He moved back to Rockford after living in Florida and having been given a year to live. Bill lived 13 additional years thanks to Dr. Hiser and the OSF Healthcare team. Bill was a history buff and enjoyed sharing stories with his grandchildren. Bill was honored and proud to be able to gift his help to people to buy cars in his retirement years. He was able to fulfill his bucket list and make it to his 60th class reunion. Bill took pride in his lawn and lawn tractor and in the winter he loved to run his snow blower.
Survived by his wife, Marilyn; children, Tim (Colene) Vivian of Roscoe and Linda (Brad Spielman) Vivian of Rockford; grandchildren, Taylor Vivian, Joe and Andrea Schumann, Danielle (Layton) Emerson, and Katherin (Scott Carnes) Brownderville; great grandchildren, Kaden Carnes, Peyton and Elliott Emerson; sister in laws, Virginia Vivian and Lois Staber; brother in law, Basil Moore; and numerous nieces and nephews. Predeceased by his parents; brother, Jack Vivian; sister, Marilyn Moore; and nephew, Tom Moore.
A special thanks to Dr. Hiser and the OSF team and to Heartland Hospice for their care and giving Bill his dignity.
Memorial Services will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, March 6, 2018 in St. Mark Lutheran Church, 675 N. Mulford Rd., Rockford with Reverend Dr. Mark Hagen officiating. Visitation will be from 9:30 to 10:50 a.m. prior to the service in the church. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to St. Mark Lutheran Church, 675 N. Mulford Rd. Rockford, IL 61107.

Condolences & Shared Memories (13)

  1. John Heins

    Tim and Colene and family, May God's Strength and peace be with you as family and friends surround you with God's love.

  2. Mary Roth

    My condolences to every member of the Vivian family on Bill's death! I am so sorry that I was unable to attend the services today, but all of you were on my mind all day. I have many fond memories of all of the times spent with members of your family. As hard as the loss of Bill is, at least he is now free of his pain and is with our Lord in Heaven. Marilyn, I hope that we can spend some more good times together when you are ready. Feel free to call anytime--Linda has my number. In the meantime, get some rest and take care of yourself. You did all that you could for Bill and I hear that you took fantastic care of him for many years. He will be missed!

  3. Stephanie Austin

    Marilyn, I am so sorry to hear of Bill's passing. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

  4. Jim and Marty Smith

    We were so sorry to read of Bill's death and especially sorry that we have not connected with you since you returned to Rockford. We have such fond memories of having you as our neighbor. Those were special times

  5. gina tatro

    linda, so sorry to learn about your Dads passing. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

  6. You know my dad💜

    Your spirit will always with me and I am so delighted thnak you are home we’re you belong , with everyone you know , your I owe you has now been fulfilled in the best way possible , I will miss you Daddy and yes , you can still say daddy even at 52 years old . Arrrrr I’m going to miss you but you tight me well . 🕊🕊🕊🕊🕊🕊🕊now be free ...........✨

  7. Ken and Marj DeWitt

    Bill was my very first friend, and like a brother. We shared lots of good times and great stories for over 75 years. He will be sorely missed.

  8. Duane & Marilyn Vaughan

    Sorry to hear of Bill’s passing. He was a wonderful husband, father, and neighbor. Our thoughts go out to Marilyn, Linda, Tim and the rest of the family. He will be fondly missed.

  9. Rich & Dar Hinrichs

    We will miss our great neighbor and friend everyday.. His humor, great smile & gentle voice will always be remembered fondly..May God be with Marilyn & all of his loving family at this sad time.

  10. Ruth Bunjes

    So sorry for your loss Marilyn. Your family is in my thoughts & prayers. If there’s anything I can do to help in anyway please let me know. I will be in contact with you. Ruth

  11. Rich & Dar Hinrichs

    We will miss our great neighbor and friend everyday.. His humor, great smile & gentle voice will always be remembered fondly..May God be with Marilyn & all of his loving family at this sad time.

  12. bert vespasian

    Worked with bill for several years at Dodge City (later Anderson Dodge) and enjoyed our relationship. Bill was a good manager & friend .....glad he enjoyed a good life.....

  13. George & Elaine Anderson

    Bill was so full of life, despite all his health issues. Loved his sense of humor and his determination. We will miss him very much.