Nelson-Berna Funeral Home and Crematory

4520 North Crossover Road, P.O. Box 8982, Fayetteville, AR

Phone: 479-521-5000

William Thomas Springer

Fayetteville, AR

1945 - 2017

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Published: November 30, 2017

William Thomas Springer was born on December 10th, 1945 in Dallas, Texas to Virgil Thomas and Nora Nell Sewell Springer. He graduated from Bryan Adams High School in 1963. He attended the University of Texas at Arlington where he received his BSME, MSME, and Ph.D. degrees in Mechanical Engineering. Bill married Barbara J. Bailey in Paris, Texas on August 26, 1979 and together they have three children. Bill died in Little Rock of cardiac arrest on Monday, November 27.

He is survived by his wife, Barbara, children, Macey Cossey and her husband, Jeremy, of Fort Smith, Katherine Stramel and her husband, Alex, of Overland Park, Kansas, and Billy Springer of Fayetteville. He is also survived by his beloved grandchildren: Bailey Gayle, Adelia Grace, and Naomi Kate Cossey and Henry Cole and Ross Stuart Stramel. He leaves behind a large, loving family including Marilyn Brock, Beth Bailey Jones, Mary Ann Davis and her husband, Ron, Frank H. Bailey and his wife, Fern, and Claire Bailey. He also leaves behind ten nieces and nephews: Julie, Rick, and Joe Del Barto, Hatton Humphrey, Matt Davis and Ellen Runno, Michael, Phil, and Patrick Bailey, and Keith Grayson in addition to their children.

Bill taught MechanicaI Engineering for over 40 years. In 1988, Bill became a faculty member of the University of Arkansas until he retired in 2013 and was bestowed an Emeritus Associate Professor title by the department, the college, and the Board of Trustees. He currently serves as President of the U.A. Retirement Association. During his tenure at the U of A, Bill won several teaching awards. Before coming to the U of A, Bill was a NASA/ASEE Summer Faculty Fellow with the Dynamics Test Branch at the Marshall Space Flight Center in Alabama from 1981-1988. Bill was an Arkansas Professional Engineer.

In addition to his busy career life, Bill has also donated his time to community service. He has worked with schools to help develop computer capabilities to assist in science related instruction and a school web page to be part of the Fayetteville Public School website. He worked with a team of students and installed the solar panels on the roof of the Fayetteville Public Library. Bill has coached the Fayetteville High School BEST Robotics team, was Co-Hub Director of the Northwest Arkansas BEST robotics competition and co-organizer of ASME Solar Splash–the International, Intercollegiate Solar/Electric Boat Regatta for five years.

For exceptional contributions and accomplishments in the engineering profession, Bill was named an American Society of Mechanical Engineers Fellow in 2011 and inducted into the Arkansas Academy of Mechanical Engineering in 2017.

A word service will be held at St. Joseph's Catholic Church, 1722 N. Starr Road at 1 p.m. on Saturday, December 2, followed by a reception. The family will have a private interment at Fairview Memorial Gardens.

In lieu of flowers, Bill would have preferred contributions to the AAME Scholarship Fund, Tau Beta Pi Scholarship Fund, Fayetteville Public Library, or the charity of your choice. To sign the online guest book please visit

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