Just as Derek Gould had done so often in his outstanding high school football career at Northeast Regional Vocational High School, he delivered very well.
On this day, the sad occasion of his father William “Bill” Gould’s Holy Eucharist service at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Chelsea, Derek Gould delivered a thoughtful eulogy in a gentle but emphatically clear voice.
He spoke as the youngest of William and Dorothy Gould’s children – on behalf of his siblings, including his older, brother, William “Bill” Gould Jr., a popular football player and member of the CHS Class of 1981. Bill Jr.’s friend and classmate, Glenn Smith, was one of the many friends who paid their respects to William Gould Sr.
Mr. Gould was a U.S. Air Force veteran of the Korean War, a proud Chelsea resident, and a past president of the former American Legion Post on Shurtleff Street, in Chelsea. He also served as president of the Chelsea Pop Warner organization and as a coach in Chelsea Little League. He was a retired engineer for the City of Chelsea Sanitation Department, where he dedicated 25 years of service.
Bill and Dorothy Gould shared 50 years of marriage before her passing in 2010. They had been lifelong residents of Chelsea before they moved to Berwick, Maine, where he has lived for the past 28 years.
Interestingly, Bill Gould Jr. recalled that his father was a quarterback in his junior high and high school days “and his center for one of the teams was Duke Bradley.”
‘Dad, We Will Always Have You in Our Hearts and Memories’
Derek Gould thanked all for attending and began his heartfelt speech that follows:
“My dad was raised during the Depression and World War II by a single parent which did not make his life growing up easy. But, because of this, he became the man he was. A strong, stern, personal man. He also was a man of many talents. He was a welder, a coach, an engineer, sanitation engineer that is, a mentor and yes, a dancer, and oh what a dancer he was.
But one thing he took very seriously was family. He always said you may have friends and they may come and go, but family is forever.
In line with that, there is an Irish saying: A family will argue and fight, but let a shout come from without and see them all unite. Everyone in here may have a story to tell referring to this saying. I know I can.
My story is a time when I was at a point of despair and needed to talk. Where did I go? Did I go to a doctor, did I go to a priest? No, I went to my dad. He did what he has always done – took care of me, listened to me, and told me a story of when he was in place of despair and how he overcame it.
These are the moments we take away from our dad and how family is there for us always, and who Bill Gould was: a great-grandfather, a grandfather, father, brother, uncle and husband that would do anything for his family.
There was another quote my dad always went by and that was: ‘I was almost wrong once, but then again I was right.’ Nothing more true than how he passed, as sick as he was getting an declining, he was not going to any hospital or aging facility and he wanted to die at home.
So, dad, you were right again and you did it your way, in your house, in your room, peacefully and happy.
Now, my dad is at peace and with his love of life, dancing and laughing.
Dad, we will miss you and always have you in our hearts and our memories.
I love you Dad.