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Former Director, Bill Gwinn, Dies

Former Director, Bill Gwinn, Dies

We are saddened to report that former Mount Hermon Executive Director William D. (“Bill”) Gwinn died Friday afternoon, April 17, in Palm Springs, CA. He had a minor heart attack on Tuesday in Banning, and doctors thought he was getting better, but then he worsened and was moved to a larger hospital in Palm Springs. He was in ICU when he died, with his wife, Colette, at his side. He was 79.

Bill was here from 1957 to 1978, starting first as program director under a dual-management model, then a triple-management model, and was finally named executive director in 1963. He was responsible for the development of a family camp program, and greatly expanded Mount Hermon’s programs, facilities, and influence in the 21 years he served here.

He is survived by his sons Casey and Doug and his daughters Melissa and Jenny, and several grandchildren.

Memorial services have been set at Mount Hermon for Tuesday, May 12, at 2:00 p.m. in the main auditorium.  Dr. Charles Swindoll has confirmed as speaker, and Dr. Howard Stevenson, Roger Williams, and Dave Talbott will also participate in the service.  A reception will follow in the Dining Hall.

Roger has authorized a “friends and family” rate for anyone coming who needs to stay overnight in Mount Hermon hotel units.  If your family needs that, call the Registration Office and tell them it’s for the Bill Gwinn Memorial Service.

The family is selecting a specific project, probably related to our trail and/or bridge system, for gifts through the Mount Hermon Book of Remembrance.  Details will be announced soon.

View Comments (2)
  • I had the privilege of serving at Hermon in the summer of ’68, and quickly grew to respect and admire Bill. He was a true leader, concerned about the people who worked not for, but with him. He had a vision for Hermon, and it is gratifying to revisit the website and see so many of the things he worked for realized today. I am old enough to see my peers passing over each year, but it is especially hard to say goodbye to people like Bill. May God bless Bill’s family.

  • Thank you, Mel, for your remembrance of Dad. You may or may not know that every summer at Mount Hermon when Dad was the director, he made it his goal to meet every staffer and learn their names. I believe he must have practiced at this in his office. When Ponderosa Lodge started in 1969, that would be an additional 50 or more people to get to know each summer. Since the memorial service in 2009 at Mount Hermon, I’ve put together a memorial blog page for people to share specific (or general) memories of Dad. If you don’t mind, Mel, I will post your comment from here to be there. The site is … Thanks again for remembering Dad.

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