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William O. Calkins

February 21, 1946 – July 7, 2017


CalkinsWilliam O. “Willy or Bill” Calkins 71, passed away at 4:00 pm July 7, 2017 in his home with his family at his side. Bill has battled Multiple Sclerosis (MS) since1998 and was recently diagnosed with Esophageal Cancer. His health had rapidly declined over the last month. He has been under the compassionate guidance and care of the Ann Arbor VA Hospital and Great Lakes Caring Home Hospice. The family sincerely thanks the wonderful staff and all the nurses who cared for him.

Born February 21, 1946 in Monroe, to Robert S. and Virginia C. (Reilly) Calkins. He grew up on North Macomb Street along with his brothers Tom and John. From a young age Bill’s passion was cars. He was particularly fond of hot rods and Corvettes. His favorite childhood memories were going to his dads work at Wittkop Pontiac with his brothers.

He was baptized and confirmed at St. Mary’s Church and was a 1964 graduate of Monroe Catholic Central. Following High School he was briefly employed by Ford Motor Company. Shortly after he purchased his first Corvette, a 1963 Stingray. The streets of Monroe were never the same.

In 1965, he was drafted into the U.S. Army. Stationed at Fort Knox, he served his country as a drill sergeant during the Vietnam Conflict. He was honorably discharged in 1967. He met his future bride, Cynthia B. Goodwin while on leave at a Corvette rally. He and Cindy would marry on July 26, 1968 at St. Mary Catholic Church.

In 1972, Bill purchased Tom’s Bar at 3475 North Monroe Street. From then on it was known as Willy’s Lounge. He carried his drill sergeant traits into bar ownership. Willy’s always had shiny floors and a clean bar. He took great pride in his bar, always working 7 days a week. Cold beer and greasy hamburgers were his specialties. Over the years he loved his regulars, softball and pool teams, his staff, and the muscle car nights. In 2012 his deteriorating health forced him to sell the bar. Please enjoy a cold one in his memory.

Bill is survived by his loving wife Cindy of 49 years who was at his side through his long battle; 2 children of Monroe, Kelly (John Masserant) and Nicklaus (Traci) Calkins. He loved his grandchildren, Riley M Fox, Ella, Audrey and Lucy Calkins. He was known as Papa and was adored by his girls. His older brother John (Carol) Calkins of Oxford Michigan, his sister in law Candace Goodwin, and brother in law Tracy (Linda) Goodwin of Lakeland, Florida, along with many nieces and nephews.

He is proceeded in death by his parents, Robert and Virginia Calkins and his brother, Thomas R. Calkins.

Bill was loved by all that knew him. We will always remember him as a kind, polite and generous man who loved to walk and drive fast along North and South Custer Roads.

Family and friends may visit from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday at Rupp Funeral Home where his family will reflect on his life at 6:30 p.m. Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. Tuesday at the funeral home. Deacon Michael Stewart of St. John the Baptist Catholic Church will officiate. Burial will follow at Roselawn Memorial Park, LaSalle.

In lieu of flowers, charitable donations may be made to St. Mary Catholic Central Scholarship fund at 108 W. Elm Street, Monroe, MI 48162.

Online condolences to the family can be sent through



5 Responses to William O. Calkins

  • Mickey davies says:

    So sad to hear about Bill’s death. I remember seeing him at our 50th class reunion. He sure was full of life. My prayers are with the family. God bless. Mickey (McCormick) Davies.
    P.S. Many good memories of Willy’s!

  • Dan Didario says:

    John & Carol ,
    So sorry to hear about the loss of your brother. You are in our thoughts & prayers.

  • Kellie A. Salvato says:

    Kelly, my dear friend, I am so very sorry to learn of your father’s passing. You and your family will be in my thoughts and payers! Stay strong and God Bless – Love you always!


  • Lynn McCloskey Harter says:

    There are definitely tears in my eyes right now. I have so many fond memories of you and Bill. What great times we had! He was a terrific man, so I know that you will miss him terribly. Please know that you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers during this most difficult time.

  • Jason Hunter says:

    Hunter/Noel lawn services would like to send our deepest condolences for your loss.

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