William Joseph Buckminster, 87, died Jan. 13, 2010, at the Knox Center for Long Term Care.

Born in Chester, Pa., on June 25, 1922, he was the son of Joseph and Ruth Post Buckminster. He moved to Owls Head with his parents when he was just a few months old. When he was 6, his father died in a tragic house fire, and the family lost everything. They moved into a house belonging to his great-aunt.

Graduating from Rockland High School in 1940, he was a long distance runner and played on the ice hockey team.

He trained as a welder at Bath Iron Works and Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, becoming a certified pipe welder. He then transferred to the Walsh Kaiser Shipyard in Providence, R.I., building Liberty ships.

In December 1943, he joined the U.S. Navy and qualified for submarine service. He served as a torpedoman at Pearl Harbor until his discharge in January 1946.

After his return he met and married Helen L. Wormwood in 1946 and returned to Owls Head, living in the house where he grew up.

Bill worked as a fish cutter in the heyday of the fishing industry in the Rockland area, and had a fish route that went door to door in Knox, Waldo and Lincoln counties for many years. During this time he and his wife began buying antiques and opened the Owls Head Antique Shop, which they operated until Helen died in 1976.

After his wife’s death, Bill started playing pool again, which he had played as a young man traveling all over the state. An accomplished pool player, he won many tournaments and was selected by the Miller Brewing Company to play in a tournament in Las Vegas. Bill had two passions, playing pool and ice hockey. He played in the men’s hockey league until he was in his late 60s.

In the last few years he made his home at the Rankin Center in Rockland, where he still collected antiques until he was hospitalized and resided at the Knox Center until his death.

Bill was predeceased by his parents; his wife; his sister, Margery P. Ripley; and his nephew, Brad Jones.

He is survived by his sister, Josephine B. Jones and her husband, Robert, of Albuquerque, N.M.; his niece, Anne Tooley of Camden; and his nephews, Fred E. Ripley Sr. and his wife, Deanna, of St. George, Christopher Jones of Albuquerque, N.M., and Eric Jones of Orlando, Fla.

Services will be held at a later date.

Memorial donations may be made to the Mussel Ridge Historical Society, P.O. Box One, Owls Head, ME 04854.

Arrangements are with the Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home in Rockland.