William Cliff Bard Sr., 93, of Lancaster, died on Saturday, Dec. 17, 2016. Born in Lancaster, he was the son of the late William Bard and E. Beatrice (Cliff) Bard Buckwalter. His wife, Ruth (Koser) Bard died in Jan. 2001.
William “Bill” Bard learned to shoulder much responsibility at a young age when his father died during the Depression. Some of his resiliency may have come from his mother’s example, who refused to send her children to an orphanage. Bill became a Jack-of-all-tradesand a master of most of them. He was a spit-and-shine kind of man, perhaps because of his Army training, and always wore freshly-buffed wing tips to church on Sunday mornings.
After W.W.II, Bill delivered milk for Queen Dairy with a horse and cart in Lancaster City. But, in his lifetime he also installed windows and doors, worked as an East Lampeter police officer and as a detective for a Lancaster City judge, primarily serving warrants and escorting prisoners to Court. Although a man of strong physique, he could usually diffuse a volatile situation with intelligence, creativity and-sometimes-compassion for the prisoner.
As an admitted perfectionist, Bill liked to “do things right-or not at all,” according to his son, Jeff. He was often a rather bluntly honest man who usually had a disregard of public opinion. He wrote a prolific number of letters: to his beloved family, including a great grandchild, to the Op-Ed page of Lancaster newspapers, to his political representatives, even to companies whose products he enjoyed!
Bill was also tender-hearted, generous with praise and fun-loving. On summer nights, he’d put a polka tune on the stereo, turn up the volume, and dance with his daughters on the front lawn. No matter the sport-ice or roller skating, archery, bowling or softball-he excelled. He sang solos at weddings, wrote hundreds of poems about a myriad of topics, including romantic love, the earth that he cherished, and of God. He also self-published a memoir in his ’70’s.
Bill loved painting “Grampa Moses-style” landscapes in his little cottage studio, which he was able to create until he became too ill in November. Primarily, he liked to give them away, because he believed that he could bring people joy.
As a Scout leader for thirty years, he felt a special affinity for mentoring boys into strong, responsible men. One of his favorite memories was the challenge of taking his troop to Philmont Scout Ranch for a wilderness experience in New Mexico.
Because he had a passion for preserving this beautiful earth, he led-under the auspices of the Sertoma Club-the creation of the East Lampeter Community Park.
Bill Bard wrote in one of his poems”….For the best that you can give to this world is love…” In word and in life, he earnestly tried to do a good deed every day, and he truly lived the Golden Rule.
Mr. Bard is survived by two sons, William Cliff Bard, Jr. (Ann) of Cocoa, FL, Jeffrey Koser Bard (Nancy) of Lancaster; two daughters, Linda married to Thomas Koch of Towson, MD, Cynthia Bard Hollinger of Lancaster; 6 grandchildren, Suzanne, Kevan, Jennifer, Justin, Michael, Amanda; 12 great-grandchildren; a brother, Richard married to Helen Bard of Lancaster; a sister, Beatrice married to Donald Andrews of Ronks. He was preceded in death by a sister, Dorothy Brandt.
The Memorial Service will be held on Thursday, Dec. 29, 2016, at 1:30 pm at the Lampeter Church of the Brethren, 1900 Lampeter Road, Lampeter. Burial will take place in the Mellinger Mennonite Cemetery at the convenience of the family. In lieu of flowers, memorials are welcomed to the Lancaster County Conservancy, 117 W. West End Avenue, Lancaster, PA 17603.