William Dean Springer, 83, of Three Rivers, died at Three Rivers Health on Tuesday morning after a month-long illness. He was born in Three Rivers on June 28, 1929, the son of Leo and Hazel (Gregg) Springer.
“Bill” graduated from Three Rivers High School in 1948, and served with the Army in Okinawa during the Korean War. He returned home and in 1954 married Dolores Ann (Detwiler) Springer, also of Three Rivers.
At age 32, following a disabling back injury sustained in a factory job, Bill moved his family to Florida so that he could attend Orlando Barber College. He loved his newfound career and went on to work as a barber for more than 50 years. Most notably, he was owner and sole proprietor of Bill’s Barber Lounge in Three Rivers. He barbered there from 1971 until 2011 — when he retired at age 82. Bill gave his final haircut to his family’s beloved physician, “Dr. Don” Schimnoski of Three Rivers.
Bill will be remembered as a man who loved his family, the Lord, St. Therese, Notre Dame football, all manner of donuts, cold beer, dogs, golf, campfires and the warm waters of Fisher Lake and the Gulf of Mexico. A true child of the Depression, he used his remarkable tenacity to overcome poverty and other limitations that many would have found insurmountable. Although never showy in his faith, Bill lived the gospel through quiet acts of generosity to the elderly, the poor, the sick and many others known but to God.
He was preceded in death by his parents and his brothers Eugene, Millard and Paul Springer of Three Rivers.
He is survived by his wife, Dolores of Three Rivers; daughter, Debra Therese (Jack) Niemi of Three Rivers; son, Jefferey William (Diane) Springer of Three Rivers; and son, Thomas Millard (Nancy) Springer of Three Rivers. Bill also leaves 10 grandchildren, Amanda Therese Dentler of Grosse Pointe Park; Tonni Dentler of Grosse Pointe Park; Elizabeth Kay (Springer) Cole of Baldwin; Nicholas Dean Springer of Norton Shores; Alina Marie Springer of Three Rivers; Darya Alexandra Springer of Ogden, Utah; Alyona Alexandra Springer of Ogden, Utah; Daniela Therese Springer of Three Rivers; Abigail Marie Springer of Three Rivers; Emily Therese Springer of Three Rivers; and a great-grandchild, Sofia Minola Cole of Baldwin.
Additionally, Bill is survived by brother-in-law and sister-in-law, George and Marsha Lewis of Three Rivers; a sister-in-law, Birgitta Springer of Mendon; and many nieces and nephews.
Cremation has taken place and the family will receive guests on Thursday, Jan. 31 from 6-8 p.m. at Hohner Funeral Home in Three Rivers with a Rosary Service beginning at 7:30 p.m. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Three Rivers on Friday, Feb. 1 at 11 a.m. with Fr. Robert Johansen as celebrant. After a luncheon in the church hall, interment of ashes will follow at Moorepark Cemetery in Three Rivers.
Memorial donations may be directed to Immaculate Conception Catholic Church. Envelopes available at Hohner Funeral Home in care of arrangements. Online condolences may be left for the family at www.hohnerfh.com.