William Mercier Sr.

[ Age 76 ] State highway worker, veteran

January 02, 2007|By John Fritze | John Fritze,sun reporter

William Joseph Mercier Sr., a retired state highway employee and a veteran of the Korean War, died Dec. 26 at Sinai Hospital of complications from pneumonia. He was 76 and lived in Reisterstown.

Born in Baltimore, Mr. Mercier graduated from Loyola High School in 1949 and attended Loyola College, where he concentrated on engineering before joining the Army. He was stationed in Korea in 1952 and 1953 and was awarded the Korean Service Medal along with several other honors.

After leaving the military as a staff sergeant, he took an engineering job with the Maryland highway department, where he stayed for nearly 30 years. He worked in the construction, survey and interstate divisions, and his work included the expansion of the Baltimore Beltway and several state bridges.

In 1951, he married Barbara G. Travers.

His son Michael T. Mercier of Reisterstown remembers occasionally going to work with his father just after the Beltway was built. He also remembered Mr. Mercier's love of sports - especially ice hockey, which he played in high school and college. His father also followed the Colts and the Orioles and often took his children to the games.

Mr. Mercier also enjoyed visiting the family's residence in Ocean City.

"He was pretty active," Michael Mercier said. "He loved going to the ocean. He'd put his hands behind his back and float on the ocean. He'd go down for blocks. We'd have to go to get him. They'd spend a lot of time down there."

Mr. Mercier was a member of Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church in Glyndon.

Burial with military honors is scheduled for 11:30 a.m. today at the Garrison Forest Veterans Cemetery in Owings Mills.

In addition to his wife and son, he is survived by three other sons, William J. "Billy" Mercier Jr. of Trappe, Gary E. Mercier of Berlin, Kenny G. Mercier of Westminster; a daughter, Sharon M. Zanetti of Perry Hall; and 11 grandchildren.

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