Bill O’Driscoll, long time Mozart fan, died on August 26, 2013 after a many year battle with Parkinson’s Disease. He was born April 29, 1928, in Cobh, Ireland, to William and Margaret (Lawrence) O’Driscoll, and accidentally emigrated after meeting his future wife at a hospital in Philadelphia.
He is survived by his wife, Mary Frances (Prosak) O’Driscoll; his children: Bill (Kathy) O’Driscoll of Onalaska, WI, Kathy O’Driscoll of Waterford, MI, Patty (Doug) Callaway of Onekama, MI; Brian (Teri) O’Driscoll of Grand Rapids, and Brendan (Christine) O’Driscoll of Grand Rapids; his grandchildren: Brian (Erica), Patrick, Shannon (Jonathon), Justin, Erin, Shawn, Eric, Chase, Alex, Mary, Liam, Matt, Kevin, Meghan, Colin, Ryan and Erin; and his great-grandchildren: Malana, Leyah, Shamari, Jayonna and Mason. He was preceded in death by his daughters, Maureen and Ann, and his sister, Sister Mary “Cher” O’Driscoll.
Bill received a liberal arts degree from Presbyterian Brothers College, then graduated from the University of Cork in medicine. He met Mary on a long term visit to Philadelphia, and promptly asked her “to tea”. After serving as a Captain in the US Army Medical Corps in post-war Japan, he specialized in Internal Medicine at Henry Ford Hospital, then set up practice in Grand Rapids. Bill was a dedicated supporter of St. Mary’s Hospital, serving at various times as Chairman of the Internal Medicine Department, as Chief of Staff and as Vice President of Medical Affairs. Bill saved his first life at 14 when he prevented a friend from drowning in the Atlantic Ocean, and after choosing a career in medicine over music continued to assist in the lives of many others for the remainder of his life.
Grandson Matt reflected, “He was a doctor, a writer, an Irish immigrant, a world traveler, a father, a husband for 59 years, music lover, and many other things. I’ll always remember so many things about him, but especially his eyes, even after years of battling Parkinson’s, his titanic intelligence was still there looking back at you. Pretty much an impressive guy all-around. Time to put on some Mozart and remember…”
And now he will “walk among the long dappled grass, and pluck until time and times are done the silver apples of the moon, the golden apples of the sun.”
Visitation will be on Thursday, August 29 from 4 PM to 7 PM at the O’Brien Eggebeen Gerst Funeral Home at 3980 Cascade Road, S.E. in Grand Rapids, MI. Mass of Christian Burial will be on Friday, August 30 at 1:30 PM at St. Robert of Newminster Church, 6477 Ada Dr. Interment Resurrection Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to the Hauenstein Neuroscience Center, Mercy Health, 220 Cherry Street SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49503