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  • Writer's pictureBeltsville News

Obituary: Seaman, William L.

Seaman, William L.

William L. (Bill) Seaman, husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, and pilot, passed away peacefully in the early morning hours of May 19th, 2020. A long-time resident of Beltsville, he is survived by his wife, Mary Lee; sister Karen Magyar; daughters Jennifer, Rebecca (Becki), and Heather; grandson Connor; granddaughter Ella; great-granddaughter Aliyah; son-in-law Antoine; bio-grandkid Melissa; and Connor’s partner Vikki who is expecting great-granddaughter-to-be Amelia.

Bill was born on February 11, 1945 in Swannanoa, NC, to Edmund and Grace Seaman, but grew up in Stratford, CT, where he attended Fairfield College Preparatory School, which prepared him for a year of college before heading off to Reno, NV, where he started on his aviation journey, earning his private, instrument, and commercial pilot licenses.

Before he left for Reno, Bill made one of the smarter decisions in his life, and asked Mary Lee Wotton to marry him, a question to which she replied “Yes” and on May 20, 1967, the two began their 53-year long journey together as husband and wife.

During an almost 40-year career in general aviation, Bill flew many planes and wore multiple hats. From residing on and managing the small airstrip in Monticello, NY, where his first X chromosome came into play and daughter Jennifer was born, to owning and operating an air charter, flight school and maintenance department, Bill did it all. Years spent flying explosives around the country kept him away from home a bit but did not stem the tide of that pesky X chromosome, and daughter Rebecca was born in Alexandria, VA in 1972.

Bill and his family moved to Beltsville, MD in 1975, purchasing their first and only house, where he and Mary Lee created the home where they would spend the next 44 years. This is also where the third and final X chromosome was passed along, and daughter Heather was born.

For many years, Bill was active in the parish of St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Beltsville, where all three daughters attended elementary school. In addition to serving as President of the Home and School Association, Bill was a lector, and for many years head lector, an active supporter of the CYO sports program, and, in his most famous role, organizer of the Santa Claus booth at the annual Christmas Bazaar, where he thrilled children, and then their children, as they sat on Santa Bill’s lap and told him of their gift lists (or ran screaming from Santa in fright).

A member of the Knights of Columbus since the late 1970’s, Bill became active in Prince George’s Council 2809, where he and Mary Lee made many friends and spent countless summer weekends at the picnic grove, many evenings at the lounge, and years of Tuesdays playing on the shuffleboard league.

After retiring from flying, Bill worked part time at Best Buy, enjoying his time assisting customers in the appliance department, and mentoring young employees. As much as he enjoyed this work, Best Buy was happy that he spent his pay on the gadgets and technology they carried, ensuring he had the latest and greatest, as did his family.

Easy to talk with, and always ready with a story to tell, Bill enjoyed being around family and friends, entertaining everyone with his funny t-shirts, bad Dad jokes, and puns. After many years of being the sole Seaman male, and main target of good-natured verbal punishment from the multitude of Seaman females, Bill took great joy and pride in being the father-figure and life mentor to grandson Connor. In addition, he adored and was adored by his granddaughters and great-granddaughter.

The Seaman Family would like to thank everyone for the outpouring of condolences and support during this time, and although the current “safer-at-home” mandate does not allow for funeral services at this time, we will be planning a memorial service for when we can all celebrate Bill’s life together. Donations can be made in Bill’s name to the Lewy Body Dementia Association at

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