AMerican Veteran 10

William M. Hawn

December 29, 1941 ~ January 11, 2021 (age 79)


William M. Hawn, 79, formerly of Millville and Vineland, died on Monday, January 11, 2021. Born in Mt. Holly and raised in Millville by his parents Charles and Helen Hawn, Bill graduated in 1960 from Millville High School, where he was a member of the varsity wrestling team. He enlisted in the US Air Force and met his first wife, Masako, while stationed in Okinawa.

Bill and Masako raised three daughters, Catherine (Cathy), Patricia (Patty) and Billie-Jo (Billie) in Millville and divorced in the mid-70s. Bill spent the early days of his civilian life at the West Company, followed by several years at Atlantic City Electric. He later went on to own and operate Hawn’s Backdoor luncheonette in Millville and spent his final working years at Redpack Foods. He owned and operated side businesses in home insulation and construction over the years as well as setting tombstones.

Bill was married to Sharon Hackett Peterson from 1976 until their divorce a few years later. His marriage to Ann Marie (Marie) Archer Winfield in 1981 ended with her sudden death in 2003. He then moved to Louisville, KY and enjoyed 14 years with his companion, Katherine (Kate) Hale. Bill returned to New Jersey in late 2017 and lived in Pitman and Williamstown.

Bill valued working with others to do good things. His activities over the years included the Millville Rescue Squad, Jaycees, Rieck Ave School PTA, Millville American Little League, and the Millville HS Marching Band Parent organization. He enjoyed organizing the Millville Christmas parade participant lineup for at least one year and enjoyed serving as Santa in the parade a few times as well. He was happy to use his skills to help light the Little League and high school football fields so that baseball didn’t have to end at dusk and so that the marching band could host evening competitions.

In his leisure time, Bill liked being outdoors. He was a member of the Venatores hunting club for many years and enjoyed fishing, too. After his retirement, he kept a duck collection in his backyard. He also enjoyed traveling when possible and visited his daughters when they lived out of state.

Bill won his battle with alcoholism after moving to Kentucky. Thanks to Kate, he enjoyed some good road trips to destinations like the Smoky Mountains and Branson, MO, but his favorites were the trips to Atlantic City, where the NJ members of his family would converge and he could see his grandchildren.

In addition to his daughters, Bill is survived by his brother and sister-in-law, Charles and Erika Hawn and their adult children Chuck and Melissa; his sons-in-law, Bob Fitzpatrick, Nick Van Langen and Russell Ferrell; his grandchildren, Kathleen (Kayti) Fitzpatrick, Andew Van Langen and Abigail Van Langen; and, his kind and loyal lifetime friend, Jim Martin.

Cremation is private. A service of interment will occur, likely this summer, on a date to be determined by the family. Friends interested in the details when they are established are invited to send a message to so that the family can be in touch. Memorial contributions are appreciated and may be directed to organizations of the donor’s choice or to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research at P.O. Box 5014, Hagerstown, MD 21741-5014 or online at For condolences please visit

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