William M. ("Bill") Norton, 60, of Pensacola, Florida, died unexpectedly on Friday, May 25, 2012 at his father's home in Great Valley, New York. Bill was born in Salamanca, New York to James and Joyce Norton. He graduated from Salamanca Central High School, Alfred University, and earned his MBA from the Rochester Institute of Technology.
Bill was an oil and gas tax specialist in Houston, Texas, at Petro-Lewis in Denver, Colorado, and at Freeport McMoran in New Orleans, Louisiana, where he was a manager. Bill retired to Pensacola, Florida, to fulfill his life's dream of living on the beach.
Bill's interest in preserving his family's historic farm in Great Valley and his love of nature led to an unofficial second career investigating the impacts of the U.S. Route 219 highway expansion project. His 15 years of exhaustive historic, environmental, engineering and legal research and his tireless demands for the transportation agency's adherence to state and federal laws won him respect in the environmental community and inspired others to join his efforts.
Bill will be remembered for the thoroughness that he brought to every task he ever tackled; his competence, quiet determination, and passion for justice; his dry sense of humor, his love of the woods and beaches, and his fondness of animals.
Bill is survived by his father, his sister, Nancy (Robert) Norton (Lipschutz), of Boulder, Colorado, his nephew, James, of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and many cousins. He was predeceased by his mother, grandparents, aunts and uncles, and his cousin, Stephen Wallquist.
A memorial visitation and service will be held at O'Rourke and O'Rourke Funeral Home, 25 River Street, Salamanca, New York, on Monday, June 4, 2012. The visitation will start at 11:00am and will be followed by a memorial service at noon.
The family requests that memorial contributions in Bill's name be made to a charity of the donor's choice.