Cover photo for R. William "Bill" Melhorn's Obituary
R. William "Bill" Melhorn Profile Photo

R. William "Bill" Melhorn

March 28, 1928 — October 13, 2022

R. William "Bill" Melhorn

R. William ‘Bill’ Melhorn, age 94, having lived an extraordinary and full life, passed away on Thursday, October 13, 2022, under the compassionate care of The Sheridan at Green Oaks Memory Care in Lake Bluff, Illinois.


Bill was born in Tampa, Florida, to Roy and Mabel (Wilson) Melhorn. The family then settled in Dayton, Ohio, where Bill spent his childhood years, attending Fairfield High School, before joining the US Army in 1946. Using the GI Bill, he finished his education at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio, with a degree in journalism. He continued his education at Columbia University in New York, New York, before settling into his writing profession.


Bill married Teruyo Ogawa in Dayton, Ohio, they celebrated 45 years of marriage prior to Teruyo’s passing in 2002.


Bill began his career as an advertising copywriter at Abbott Laboratories in North Chicago, Illinois. Next, he worked for several ad agencies in Chicago, Illinois; one in Tokyo, Japan, and retired from his profession in Los Angeles, California. He authored a book, Tokyo Cocktail, essays on his observations of Tokyo post World War II.


Bill’s first love was travel, by foot, car, plane, train, or ship. He traveled the world, loving to experience new cultures. He had a particular interest in Asia.


Later in life, while living in California, Bill took to running and biking. He participated in and completed several 5K’s. He always said of himself, “I consider myself to be a solid B+.”


He leaves behind his loving daughters Lili J. Melhorn (Gordon Frankel) and Lisa A. Norton (Thomas); granddaughter, Emalie Dalbke (Steve); and two great-grandchildren, Rowan Thomas and Zinnia Elyse.


Bill also held a very special place in his heart for the Whale family: Greg, Birgit, and Annalisa; and the Betti family: Lisa, Raimondo, Susanna and Gulia.


Bill is preceded in death by his parents Roy and Mabel Wilson Melhorn; and the two women who loved him so well in his life, Teruyo Melhorn and Nikki Whale.


Pastor Bryan Meadows will officiate a graveside service at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, April 11, 2023, in Greenwood-Union Cemetery in DeGraff, Ohio.


DARING & SANFORD FUNERAL HOME, DEGRAFF is honored to serve the Melhorn family and encourages anyone to share a fond memory or message of condolence at
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of R. William "Bill" Melhorn, please visit our flower store.

Past Services

Graveside Service

Tuesday, April 11, 2023

10:00 - 10:30 am (Eastern time)

Greenwood-Union Cemetery

676 Cretcher St, De Graff, OH 43318

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