Dr. Bill Finlan died suddenly Sunday evening, July 21, 2019 at U.P. Health System – Marquette. He was born December 8, 1934. He leaves behind a large family. Born to Patrick and Mildred Finlan, and except for his career time in the Washington, D.C. and Detroit area, he spent his young life and retired life in his beloved Chemical Location behind Pioneer Trail Park in Delta County, where his parents lived. Bill served as a combat veteran in the Korean War.
His career took him to teaching in the Escanaba High School; Gwinn High School. Finally, Dr. Finlan was a career Legislative Consultant for 23 school districts in the Detroit’s northern suburbs, working as an administrator for Macomb Intermediate School District for many years. Finlan acquired many degrees, including his Doctorate from Wayne State University; a Fellowship Masters in Journalism from the University of Michigan; and several Bachelor Degrees in Journalism and English from Wisconsin State University at River Falls.
Among his many accomplishments, Dr. Finlan led a three-year state-wide drive and was successful in getting voters to change Michigan’s Constitution minimum drinking age from age 18 back to age 21. Dr. Finlan is an honorary member of both the National and the Michigan Parent Teach Boards – and he helped form and was an initial member of Michigan’s Children with Learning Disabilities Organization. He served as chairman of several city library boards and was the President of the largest Democratic Club (down state).
He is very proud to have accomplished all of this in spite of the fact that he was a high school drop-out from EHS. He finished high school working on a farm in Oconto Falls, WI and graduated from Oconto Falls High School before he volunteered for the Army, where he became a boxing champion and later fought in the Korean War. Dr. Finlan wrote and had published eleven books – the latest was published by Amazon in Kindle throughout 70 countries.
Visitation will be held from 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., Wednesday, July 24, 2019 at St. Anne Catholic Church in Escanaba. Military Honors will be conducted at 5:00 p.m. by the Delta County Veterans Council. Mass of Christian Burial will follow at 5:30 p.m., Wednesday, with Father Fran DeGroot officiating. A luncheon will be served at the conclusion of the services in the church fellowship hall.