William Sipfle ’64

11 March 2019

Class: 1964

Major: Physics

Residence: Ashland, OR

Deceased: March 7, 2019

Alumni survivors: Ms. Jill M. Hinners ’89 (Cousin)

November 23, 1941 — March 7, 2019
Bill was a great guy that I liked very much. He loved our reunions and our mini-reunions, and without previous announcement, would just show up sometimes. Bill had the college connection to his brother, David, who was a Carleton philosophy professor.
Bill loved mountain hikes and bikes, participating frequently in endurance and altitude tests. When we saw him at a reunion, he was usually dressed for the outdoors.
Did you know that bill was married in Northfield right after commencement on our graduation day in 1964? He married Kathy Albright 63. They had two sons, Ken and Doug, but were divorced in 1979.
After Carleton, Bill obtained two master’s degrees, one in physics from the University of Wisconsin and the other in library science from the University of Minnesota. Those degrees helped him obtain a job with Bell Labs in New Jersey where he lived until 1977. Then Bill was transferred to the Bell Labs branch in Denver where his mountain odyssey began.
Obituary published in the Ashland Daily Tidings
William Karl (Bill) Sipfle died peacefully March 7, 2019 at Skylark Assisted Living in Ashland, OR. Born to Karl and Louise (Hinners) Sipfle November 23, 1941 in Springfield, IL, he graduated from Webster Groves High School, St. Louis, MO, attended MIT and graduated from Carleton College, Class of ’64, where he wed Katherine (Kathy) Albright in the Carleton chapel on graduation day. Together 15 years, they were parents to Kenneth Arthur and Douglas Alan Sipfle. Both sons now live in Longmont, CO. Bill completed Masters degrees in physics (U. of Wisconsin) and library science (U. of Minnesota). Between degrees he taught physics two years at Ripon College, and later worked 20 years in systems programming and supervision at Bell Laboratories in Murray Hill, NJ, and Denver, CO. Living close to the Rocky Mountains in Boulder, he discovered high altitude hiking, trail running, and cycling before a diagnosis at age 43 of stage-four non-Hodgkins lymphoma. He beat the prognosis of 5-7 years, continuing work, travel, including Europe, the Himalayas, and Peru, retiring in 1989. Two years later he moved to Ashland, a university town with mountains and culture. He was married in 2000 to Kathryn (Kate) Cleland, who survives, along with Kathy (Ron) Taylor, son Ken (Deborah), their children Hannah (Andrew Alm), Corban and Joshua; son Doug (Elisa), their son Justin; niece Gail Sipfle, and cousins including John (Linda) Hinners , and Marion Hinners, William (Tammy), James (Carol, Edward (Karen) Sipfle and Nancy (John) Woestman. Bill leaves four beloved Alm great-grandchildren, Garrett, Micah, Anabeth and Briella. He was predeceased by brothers David (Dave), sister-in-law Mary Alice, and brother Richard (Dick). Bill was active in the Jackson County Bridge Club (Unit 484, ACBL), the Rogue Recyclers, the Hash House Harriers, and belonged to the Rogue Valley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, where a celebration of his life will be held Saturday, April 27, 2019 at 11 am.

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