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William Olive Jr.

June 1, 1921 ~ October 27, 2018 (age 97)

William W. Olive Jr., age 97 died at home October 27, 2018, of heart failure.   He was known for his kindness, helping others, sense of humor, and being a great friend.  William (Bill) was born in St. Louis, MO in 1921.  Bill lived through the Great Depression and became interested in electricity because his father was an electrician.  He graduated from the University of Missouri in 1943 with a degree in electrical engineering. In 1944 Bill truly married the girl next door, having lived next door to Sylvia Fuchs while in elementary school. Sylvia was the love of his life.  They were married sixty years.  They enjoyed dancing, traveling, playing bridge, raising their daughter Kristin, and being part of the lives of their grandchildren, Kyle and Julia.  
Bill was kept out of WWII because of a heart murmur.  After college, he began his career as an electrical engineer at Curtis Wright and McDonald Douglas, where he served his country by appraising and modifying Navy Helldiver aircraft.  In 1946, he went to work for Kearney Company, which designed and manufactured high-voltage power line equipment.  Bill received two patents as an engineer at Kearney.   
In 1969, the company moved to Atlanta and he moved his family away from everything he had known in St. Louis and fell in love with Georgia.  He retired after working at Kearney 39 years.  
He was interested in photography all his life and loved working in his darkroom.   When digital photography became possible, he began using a digital camera and photo-editing software.  He took pleasure in giving his photos away to friends.  His family will miss the DVDs he made of vacation photos set to music.
Friends called him Mr. Fix It and people knew they could contact Bill when something electrical stopped working or when they couldn’t program their VCR.  Bill had a curiosity for learning new things and any kind of tool or gadget.  He used his computer and iPhone well into his 90s. 
Bill had a knack for being a great listener and genuine curiosity for what others liked to do. Up until age 96, he started his day by meeting friends for coffee, six days a week.  Bill’s many other interests included watching and feeding the birds in his backyard, doing the Jumble, making apple pies, and rooting for the Atlanta Braves. It was his joy to watch his grandchildren grow up and he was very proud of their character and achievements.  
He joins his wife Sylvia in heaven, who passed away in 2004.  He is survived by his daughter Kristin Norton, son-in-law Jim, grandchildren Kyle and Julia, nieces Gloria Decker and Nancy Schuble and nephews Don Decker and Ray Fox. Bill will be missed by all who knew him.
Donations can be made in his memory to Habitat for Humanity Atlanta, and online condolences may be left at


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