Retired Chemistry Professor Dies at 74

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Professor engaged in political, community and church activities throughout his life.

By Emily Garcia

William Haley portraying Bill Haley of Bill Haley & His Comets in a 1940s event, which featured professors who depicted famous people. File

After dedicating 45 years to teaching and leaving an impact on colleagues and students, retired chemistry Professor William Haley died Jan. 4 at age 74.

The cause of his death was Lewy Body Dementia.

Lewy Body Dementia closely resembles Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease and it is widely under-diagnosed, according to the Lewy Body Dementia Association.

Haley was diagnosed with Lewy Body Dementia in 2013, his wife Judith Haley said.

“Haley contributed to the chemistry and earth sciences department as a professor and served as chairman between 1980 and 1990,” chemistry Professor Krishnan Madappat said Jan. 10.

Haley served as pre-med faculty advisor and as club sponsor for the San Antonio College Republicans and the Chemistry Club. He served as radiation safety officer of the chemistry and earth sciences department from 1987 to 2008, earth sciences Professor Roger Stanley said. At that time, the department retained radioactive isotopes.

Haley engaged his community by judging science fairs and performing chemical magic shows for local elementary schools, Stanley said.

“He was a very good father and family man,” Judith Haley said. “His son always said he was a good example to follow because he was loyal, faithful and giving.”

Haley was involved with Holy Spirit Catholic Church and taught religion classes, Judith Haley said.

“He was very instrumental and not only took care of chemistry but also astronomy, geology and geography,” chemistry Professor John Paparelli said.

Haley was known for maintaining high expectations and standards in his classes, Paparelli said.

Haley’s funeral was Jan. 10 and he was buried at Holy Cross Cemetery, 17501 Nacogdoches Road.

The family asks for memorial contributions to be made to dementia research.


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