The Obit For William Wiltrout

William Wiltrout

Published in the adn.com from 12/23/2008 - 12/24/2008

Anchorage resident William Wayne Wiltrout, 79, died Dec. 16, 2008, at Providence Alaska Medical Center, from complications of a stroke suffered Dec. 15 at his daughter Kerrie's home.
A memorial service will be at noon Saturday at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 11701 Puma St., in Anchorage. Bishop Michael Milliman will officiate.

"Coach" Wiltrout, as he is fondly remembered by thousands of former students, was born Jan. 12, 1929, in Bitner, Pa., to Carl B. and Mildred M. (Crossland) Wiltrout. After graduation from South Union Township High School in Uniontown, Pa., he served in the U.S. Army and was stationed primarily in Marburg, Germany, until his honorable discharge in 1948.

After his military service, Mr. Wiltrout attended West Virginia University, where he was a member of Kappa Delta Pi and was on the varsity football and baseball teams. During his college years, he also played minor league baseball for the Pittsburgh Pirates for four seasons.

It was while he was a student at WVU that Mr. Wiltrout met and fell in love with his future wife, Janet Elisbeth Matheson.

Upon graduating magna cum laude with a bachelor's degree of physical education in 1953, Mr. Wiltrout spent a year as the head football, basketball and baseball coach at Haw River High School in Graham, N.C., while his fiancee, the future Mrs. Wiltrout, studied in France on a Fulbright Scholarship.

On July 31, 1954, Mr. and Mrs. Wiltrout were married in Fairmont, W.Va., and "honeymooned" on a cross-country drive from West Virginia to Alaska, where their new jobs as teachers awaited them. They taught in Anchorage and Homer from 1954-1957, then returned to West Virginia University, where they both obtained their graduate degrees in 1958.

Mr. and Mrs. Wiltrout returned to teach in Homer from 1959-1963, during which time Mr. Wiltrout also served as the high school principal. It was during these years that their two daughters, Kristin and Kerrie were born.

In 1963, the Wiltrout family moved to Anchorage. Over the next 17 years, Mr. Wiltrout taught and inspired thousands of students at West Anchorage High School as a physical education instructor, athletic director, and coach of football, basketball, cross-country running and track and field until his retirement in 1979.

Retiring from high school education did nothing to diminish Mr. Wiltrout's desire to teach and inspire the youth of Alaska. In 1984, Mr. and Mrs. Wiltrout moved back to Homer, where Mr. Wiltrout spent the next 14 years between 1984-1998 as a basketball official refereeing junior high and senior high games all across the state of Alaska until the age of 68.

Mr. and Mrs. Wiltrout left Homer in the summer of 1998 and moved first to Virginia, and later to Pennsylvania. Following his wife's death in 2001, Mr. Wiltrout spent the summers and autumns in Alaska, dividing his time between his beloved cabin at Bonnie Lake and Anchorage,with his daughter, Kerrie, and his grandson, Ian. The winters and springs were spent in Charlottesville, Va., with his daughter, Kristin, and her family.

Mr. Wiltrout is survived by his daughter and son-in-law, Kerrie Wiltrout Daniels and Kelley Jay Daniels of Anchorage; daughter and son-in-law, Kristin and Paul Walker of Earlysville, Va.; grandchildren, Ian William Fraser, Maya Daniels and Jada Daniels of Anchorage, and Lauren Walker and Daniel Walker of Earlysville; and his youngest brother, Morgan Wiltrout, of Coudersport, Pa.

Mr. Wiltrout was preceded in death by his wife, Janet Elisbeth Matheson Wiltrout; and his brothers, Frances Schubert, who lived in Oregon, and Von Wiltrout, who lived in Uniontown, Pa.

Friends, colleagues, and former students who would like to send condolences may mail them to Kerrie Wiltrout Daniels, 11631 Thoreau Circle, Anchorage 99515.