US Coast Guard

William "Bill" Herbert Ottow

October 2, 1944 ~ November 8, 2022 (age 78) 78 Years Old


William Herbert Ottow known as “Bill” or “Billy” to many, age 78, of Menasha, went peacefully and without pain on to a better land to be with mom, surrounded by his daughter and a family friend on November 8, 2022. He was born to the late Herbert and Laura (Derpinghaus) Ottow on October 2, 1944 in Oconto, Wisconsin. Bill attended Oconto High School, where he graduated in 1962. He attended Owosso College in Michigan before he proudly joined the United States Coast Guard in 1963. He spent the next 25 plus years serving his country in many capacities from buoy and lighthouse tending to search and rescue, along with breaking ice for large ships on Lake Michigan. One of his most memorable, yet sorrowful days while on duty was the night the Edmond Fitzgerald sank. He retired in 1990.

 In 1971 he met the love of his life, Sallie, and they were married the same year. In 1972 the couple had their only daughter Elizabeth. After the death of his love in 2016, he became an adoptive Grandpa to 3 amazing kids, Dominic, Ally and Courtney Corrente. He enjoyed going to their school activities and watching the kids at many sporting events. He attended Trinity Lutheran Church in Menasha, to watch the kids programs as well as attending the veterans programs there. He joined a widows group (Theo) and was a proud member of AA and Al-Anon for over 36 years. He also attended gathering at Vets and Friends in Appleton. His hobbies included, working on computers, cribbage and after his retirement he became the ultimate House Husband and grocery guru. Bill was a social butterfly and could become friends with anybody.

He is survived by his daughter Elizabeth "Betsy" (Donald) "Donnie" Meverden, Menasha, cousins, Father Kenneth Augustine, Lynn (Don) Woo, and children Kaitlyn (Kyle), Michael, Megan and Jacob, all of Wisconsin, aunt/Godmother Erna Mainhardt and aunt Alice, along with many other special cousins in the Ottow and Hansen family along with his step family The Shaws of Michigan.

Bill was preceded in death by his parents, his loving wife, his cousins James (Ruthann) Augustine, aunt Helen (Joe) Augustine, step mother Doris Ottow, step sister Carol Shaw, grandparents Herman (Bertha) Ottow, Henry (Agnes) Derpinghaus and Ann and Erv Hansen.

Family and friends may gather on Saturday, November 12, 2022 from 9:00am until service time of 11:00am at Trinity Lutheran Church, 300 Broad St. Menasha with Pastor Keith Gerue officiating. In lieu of flowers, Bill's request is memorials in his memory are to go to Vets and Friends of Wisconsin, Inc. or to Trinity Lutheran food pantry in Menasha. The service will be live streamed, and can be found at  

The family wishes to thank the wonderful nurses and doctors at Aurora Medical Center in Oshkosh. 

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November 12, 2022

9:00 AM to 11:00 AM
Trinity Lutheran Church (Broad St. Menasha)
300 Broad St
Menasha, WI 54952

Funeral Service
November 12, 2022

11:00 AM
Trinity Lutheran Church (Broad St. Menasha)
300 Broad St
Menasha, WI 54952


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