F. William (Bill) Thewalt

Age 88, died peacefully Monday, August 7, 2023 at his home in Grand Blanc, Michigan. Expressions of sympathy may be shared with the family on Bill’s Tribute Wall at detroitcremationsociety.com.

Bill was born April 10, 1935 in Detroit, Michigan to Frank and Ruth Thewalt. He was a big brother to his only sister, Penny (Thewalt) Oberg.

He graduated from the University of Michigan in 1958 with a degree in Business Administration. In his early career he was business partners with his father at Fraher Sausage Co., a wholesale sausage maker, known by the family as the Bologna Foundry.

Because he owned a white dinner jacket, Bill was asked by a fraternity brother to be in his wedding. It was there Bill met Joyce Bogg. In 1968 they were married, and they began their common life in Detroit. In 1970 they moved to Grand Blanc when Bill began his career as a writer for General Motors' Marketing Educational Services division where he primarily developed, wrote and taught training curriculum for the owners and managers of General Motors dealerships.

In Grand Blanc they built a family and became involved in their community’s life. Bill was involved in local politics as campaign manager for a candidate for the Grand Blanc Township Board and later was appointed to the Grand Blanc Township Planning Commission. In his retirement years, he became well known for his pointedly worded letters to the editor.

Throughout the whole of his life, Bill served the organizations he belonged to and supported on leadership or strategic committees including St. Christopher’s Episcopal Church, the Episcopal Dioceses of Michigan and Eastern Michigan, Flint Area Wine Society, Flint Community Players, and the Flint Retired Men’s Fellowship. Many have remarked they will miss Bill’s contributions of strategic thinking and his expertly written minutes.

The true joy of Bill’s life was his family. Bill and Joyce enjoyed travelling together, tending to the vegetable garden in their backyard, hosting dinner parties, and supporting the careers, hobbies and interests of their two daughters.

Ever the Michigan man, Bill donated his whole body to the University of Michigan medical school for the advancement of knowledge of its students.

He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Joyce Bogg Thewalt, his sister Penny (Tim) Oberg of Larchmont, New York, his daughters Laura and Sondra, both of Houston, Texas, his nieces Juliet and Jessica, nephews Ted and Matt and many great nieces and nephews.

A Celebration of Life service will occur on Saturday, September 16, 2023 at 2:00 pm at St. Christopher’s Episcopal Church, G-9020 S. Saginaw Rd, Grand Blanc MI. The attire is Maize and Blue. The family will receive visitors following the service.

Donations may be made in his memory to any of the following:

St. Christopher’s Episcopal Church – please specify Restricted – Memorial. Donations received will be placed in the Endowment Fund, Bill was one of the architects of this fund. http://www.stchrisgrandblanc.org/donate-2/ .

Flint Community Players, https://www.flintcommunityplayers.com/support-us .

Bill’s obituary was written by his loving family.


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13 Condolences

  1. Judy Collins (Green) on August 12, 2023 at 4:20 pm

    Joyce and girls, I have memories of your Dad. I used to never fail to read his letters to the editor. He was a very fluent writer. Then one day we got a for call at your house and if I remember correctly it was in the attic. Always enjoyed your parents.

  2. Tami (Lindsey) Bellefeuille on August 12, 2023 at 4:30 pm

    Dearest Thewalt family, I have so many beautiful memories of spending time with your father and mother and family. I hope knowing he is there with my Alex, can bring you some peace. He said, “Hey Mr Thewalt!! Come listen to some music…” then he took him by the hand and is showing him the way.

  3. Lisa Peasley on August 12, 2023 at 4:36 pm

    Dearest Joyce, Laura and Sondra,

    I am heartbroken to hear of Bill’s passing. My deepest sympathies to all of you, and prayers that the Holy Spirit, who is the Comforter, will minister to you during your time of mourning . 🙏🏻🙏🏻🙏🏻🙏🏻🙏🏻


  4. Nancy Moga on August 12, 2023 at 6:31 pm

    Dear Joyce, Laura and Sondra,
    So sorry to read this news. The memories become a part of our lives, and we cherish their presence. The Lord be with you at this time and evermore. Sending hugs! Nancy Moga and Family

  5. Arlene Geisler on August 12, 2023 at 7:06 pm

    Dear Joyce, Laura, and Sondra,
    Ken and I offer our deepest condolences. Bill was a wonderful person and a fantastic neighbor. We will always remember and appreciate his generosity and sense of humor. Stay strong.

  6. Dr. Gary W. Patterson on August 13, 2023 at 12:18 am

    My sincere condolences to Joyce, Laura, and Sondra on the passing of Bill. I send my love and prayers from our St Stephen’s Houston community.

  7. Margie Smith on August 13, 2023 at 9:27 am

    Dear Joyce, Penny, Laura and Sondra: I am so sorry to hear this. As Penny pointed out many times to me: He was a wonderful big brother. The greatest. He also encouraged Penny (and me) to apply to the University of Michigan because he loved it so. My sincere sympathy.

  8. KARL AND LINDA HAISER JR. on August 14, 2023 at 12:59 pm


  9. Barbara Martin and Family on August 15, 2023 at 11:12 am

    Joyce, Laura and Sondra,
    Our deepest condolences to your family… but how lucky you were to have him in your lives for all those years! He had it his way… at home, in his own bed, with his precious family. Does it get any better? You were the best neighbors in our Grand Blanc homes… the Labor Day lawn mower races, our dynamic couples volleyball league, those embarrassing Disco dancing lessons and many many sod laying parties. Miss those days, and will miss Bill as well. Bill and Art already have their Michigan football seats to watch from Heaven… between the two of them, we might even hear their yelling voices all the way down here! May you have peace and wonderful memories!

  10. H. Keith Hellems on August 15, 2023 at 4:24 pm

    We are sorry to hear that one of our most outstanding alumni, Bill Thewalt, passed away August 7. He was active in the Michigan Delta Chi chapter as a student and alumnus. He served as vice-president, member-at-large and then as president of fraternity. He was Alumni Advisory from fall of 1960 to spring of 1966 and then was President of the Alumni Board of Trustees in the fall of 1967. He was also the organizer of many of the more successful alumni weekends over the decades, keeping his timeframe brothers in contact with the fraternity. He was a good man. We will miss his camaraderie.
    Keith Hellems, M.D. , 1962 U. of Mich. Delta Chi

  11. Tom Downs on August 16, 2023 at 5:35 pm

    Love. May his memory linger and his life serve as a guide for many.

  12. Tomoko Miller on September 15, 2023 at 1:57 pm

    We at Flint Community Players will miss Bill. It was wonderful to see him in our audience time and time again. I want to give his family my condolences.

  13. Al & Debbie Jones on September 16, 2023 at 9:32 am

    What a wonderful man and family. We always enjoyed our conversations with Bill and Joyce. I was able to attend an amazing MICHIGAN football game with Bill, Joyce and Sondra. What a day and what a game. I treasure all of our memories.
    We are extremely blessed to have such friends.

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