William H. Bernardara

January 9, 1923 ~ March 28, 2019 (age 96)
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William “Bill” Bernardara, 96, passed away peacefully at Holyoke Medical Center on March 28, 2019. His son Bob and daughter-in-law Mary Jo were by his side to give love and comfort. He was born in Southwick, MA on January 9, 1923. Bill was a depression-era child, WWII veteran, salesman, husband, father and proud grandfather. He lived by three golden rules; work hard, always tell the truth and enjoy life. He loved his career in the lumber industry and he was a highly successful salesman at Boilard Lumber until he retired. Bill was a man of many personal pursuits including fishing, hunting, woodworking, gardening and small engine repair. His resourcefulness was astounding in that he could repair or fabricate just about anything. Much of the furniture in his home was crafted by his own hands. Bill, more affectionately known as “Papa,” drew smiles from family, friends and acquaintances. He was loved by so many people in different circles. He was always impeccably dressed, even when working in the yard or buzzing around town in his Subaru Outback (often with a trailer in tow with some sort of “rubbish” or mulch).  Simple pleasures, such as a glass of red wine, cheese and crackers, and a view of the woods behind our home, made him so happy. He felt at peace during these precious moments as he was a man who loved the outdoors. Papa’s greatest joy came from his grandchildren. He was so proud of Robert and Jess and every moment with them was cherished, whether it was playing a game of Uno with Jess or doing yard work with Robert. He loved them beyond words and at family gatherings, he would often shed a tear and hold them tight as if each time was his last.  Bill did so much for others and asked for nothing in return. Bill leaves behind his son Bob, daughter-in-law Mary Jo, grandchildren Robert and Jessica, his sister Shirley; and many nieces and nephews. He is predeceased by his wife Lois, son Billy and sisters Thelma, Eunice, Katherine and his brother Frank. Calling hours will be from 4:00-7:00 PM on Tuesday, April 2 at Firtion Adams, 76 Broad St., Westfield, MA.  A service will be held at the same location on Wednesday, April 3 at 11:00 AM immediately followed by a burial at New Southwick Cemetery in Southwick, MA (off Rt. 10-202). In lieu of flowers, a contribution to Special Olympics would be appreciated. (

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