William D. Young

“The farther backward you can look, the farther forward you are likely to see.” – Sir Winston Churchill.

The family of William D. Young regrets to inform that our beloved husband, father, grandfather and historian passed away on Tuesday, February 28, 2023, at LMH Health. There are no formal services.

William was born on July 16, 1955, in Seattle, WA, the son of Kenneth and Marilyn (Hertlein) Young.

He married Michelle Garling on March 5, 1977, in Waterloo, IA, and she survives at home.

Other survivors include his sons, Michael Kenneth (Laine) Walters Young, Benjamin Russell Young, devoted family friend, Matthew Joseph Jansen, brother, Dale (Denise) Young, sisters, Susan Young, Joan Young, and one grandson, Theodore James Walters Young.

William was preceded in death by his parents.

William led a life dedicated to service – service to his family, service to his profession and service to others. He sparked the love of learning for generations of students and professors alike, fostering the spirited interest in what was and how it can shape what is and what is to come. His proudest professional achievement was his unwavering dedication of 22 years to Maple Woods Community College in North Kansas City. His passion for the humanities and the classroom was only surpassed by his love of his family and love of watching his favorite teams, especially the Green Bay Packers. He was a voracious reader, and always found time to expand his knowledge regardless of what life threw at him. He will be sorely missed, but his indominable spirit lives on in all whom he touched.

The family suggests memorials in William’s name to Cottonwood, Inc. in Lawrence, the Lawrence Public Library and may be sent in care of Warren-McElwain Mortuary, 120 W. 13th Street, Lawrence, KS 66044.

12 Condolences

  1. Deb Engstrom on March 3, 2023 at 9:56 am

    Benjamin, I’m so sorry to hear about your dad’s passing. I’m sure that you and your mom will miss him greatly, but you will have wonderful memories to hold on to. You are in my prayers.

  2. Sara Finley on March 3, 2023 at 9:13 pm

    Michelle, Ben, and Michael,
    I am so sorry to hear of Bill’s passing. What a wonderful man! Always an advocate for Ben and proud of all of you! It was. Pleasure getting to know him while Ben was a student of mine.
    Keeping you in my thoughts,

  3. Steve Jansen on March 4, 2023 at 12:08 pm

    What a man! What a friend! His due diligence and dedications to teaching was exemplary. I will miss him! His life will continue to inspire his sons, his wife and all of his many friends.

  4. Diane Boldt on March 5, 2023 at 5:06 pm

    Bill was one of my absolute favorite people. He was unfailingly kind, generous, and humorous, and observing his big picture grasp of history did a lot to help me not get lost in the weeds when crafting my own lectures. He was an important mentor and an unflagging friend and supporter to me, and I will miss him in so many ways I can’t even anticipate yet. I was privileged to know him. I’m so sorry for his family’s incalculable loss

  5. Maria Butler on March 6, 2023 at 5:37 pm

    Dear Michelle and Ben,
    I was so sorry to hear the sad news of Bill’s passing. You are in my thoughts.

  6. Virgil Dean on March 7, 2023 at 9:31 am

    Michelle, Ben, and family: I cannot tell you how shocked and saddened I was to learn of Bill’s passing in this morning’s LJW. Sorry doesn’t get it, of course, so I’ll just say that I will cherish the good memories from those long ago grad school days, especially of Bill and little Michael hanging out in our Wescoe basement office. Bill’s friendship and support helped me survive that experience. Virgil

  7. Rex & Bev Lockwood on March 7, 2023 at 1:29 pm

    Rex & I are so sad to hear of Bill’s passing. Great neighbor for 14 years! Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.

  8. Beverly & Ian Jennings on March 7, 2023 at 9:20 pm

    Our deepest condolences and thoughts are with MIchele, Benjamin and the family. We both worked with Bill at Maple Woods for many years. Ian had the honor of studying under Bill as a student for several classes. His dedication to imparting his considerable knowledge onto others was exemplary. In addition, he was a damn nice bloke. He has now joined his good friend Paul Long at the community college in the sky. It was a pleasure to have known him. Our message to the family is simply “remember the good times.”

    Ian and Beverly Jennings
    Bradenton, Florida

  9. Paul Stuewe on March 8, 2023 at 11:15 am

    Michelle, Michael, Ben, and Family,
    I was shocked and sadden to hear of Bill’s passing. As a fellow history teacher he was an inspirational teacher and historian in addition to being a wonderful person who was always willing to help in any way possible. I truly enjoyed our conversations and also having Michael as a student at LHS.
    Thinking of you,
    Paul Stuewe

  10. Ed Goedeken on March 21, 2023 at 10:26 am

    Dear Michelle, Michael and Ben:

    I was deeply saddened to learn of Bill’s passing. I could not believe it. He and I first got acquainted when we were both in graduate school studying history at Iowa State University way back in the late 1970s. Then we both migrated to the University of Kansas to continue our studies. I always considered BIll and Michelle to be great people and wonderful friends, even after all these years. I always looked forward to their newsy Christmas letter that I received each year right after Thanksgiving. Such a sad thing indeed. Bill was a great guy, a dedicated historian and wonderful teacher, father, and grandfather. He will indeed be missed by all of us.

  11. Dale Martin on March 29, 2023 at 12:17 pm

    Michelle and Ben –
    I’m so sorry to hear this news. I want you to know my thoughts are with you,
    – dale.

  12. David Miles on April 25, 2023 at 7:30 pm

    I remember coming to Ames, Iowa in the fall of 1977 to attend graduate school at ISU, not knowing a single person in the entire state. That quickly changed, meeting a great corps of fellow historians, Bill (and Michelle) chief among them. And Bill was not only a student of history but he was also a student of sports and we bonded immediately in Room 618. We had very different rooting interests (other than the Cyclones of course). And in 1977 his Yankees succeeded my Reds as two-time World Series champions but all was still right between us. I am now in the unenviable process of needing to downsize my extensive library and am finding a number of books that I got from Bill or with Bill, as I noted on the inside cover some 45 years ago. Many memories abound from Pammel Court to the Midwest League All-Star game to teaching Bill’s American history discussion sections the day that Michael was born to helping them all move to Lawrence. I am very saddened to know that Bill is gone, but a better historian and a better person for having known him.

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