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Shelter Island Reporter obituary: William Price Rowland

William Price Rowland was born in Greenport, N.Y. on Nov. 1, 1951, to Wesley Ward Rowland and Elizabeth Price Rowland. After a lifetime of service to his community, William entered eternal rest on Dec. 24, 2021.

William was preceded in death by his parents, brother-in-law John Adriany, and nephew Timothy Adriany. He is survived by his loving wife Catherine Rowland; siblings Lesley Adriany, George Rowland, and Rosemary Adriany; nieces Jessica (Brent) Sullins, Jennifer (Jeff) Barnes, and Crystal Cook; nephew David Taplin; great-nieces and nephews Joshua, Joseph, Derek, Lucas, Tyler, Ayden, Lilly, Ashley, Dalton, and Timmy; godson Nicky (Stephanie) Gross and his mother Chrissy Gross; numerous cousins, close friends; and a community whom he considered family.

How do you sum up seven decades of service in only a few paragraphs? For William, it all began with the legacy his father instilling in him service to family and community. The lessons he learned, and the life-long friendships made, began with cub scouts as a young man. William followed in his father’s footsteps by eventually becoming a scout master himself and inspiring the next generation of scouts.

After graduating from Shelter Island High School, William began his career of volunteer rescue service with the Shelter Island Heights Fire Department, before moving to Glen Rock, N.J. There, William was an active member of the Glen Rock Volunteer Ambulance Corp for 10 years. Even today he is remembered fondly by them as they’ve hung mourning bunting at the station in William’s honor.

Shelter Island, however, kept calling his name like a siren until he returned. In 1994, William joined the Shelter Island Volunteer Fire Department, proudly serving as Fire Chief from 2007 to 2011 and was the captain on his beloved Tanker 10-1-1. At the time of his death, William had proudly served his Island community for over 30 years.

In 2005, William married Catherine Oliver Rowland. He loved going camping with Catherine and pup Leaf and attending NASCAR races together. William’s life was his wife, his family, and the Fire Department, who was like a family to him.

William will take his final ride on Jan. 8, 2022, after which he will be laid to rest next to his parents at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church. In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial donations be made in William’s name to the Shelter Island Volunteer Fire Department, 49 North Ferry Road, Shelter Island, NY 11964.