William Phillip Brennan, Jr. (Bill) passed away on December 22, 2012 at a hospital in Austin. He was a man who fully LIVED each of his 96 years.
Bill was born on August 30, 1916 in Clinton, Iowa to W.P. Brennan, Sr. and Ella Barker Brennan. Following his father's work with the railroad, the family lived in several cities throughout the Midwest, finally settling in Crystal City, Texas in 1929. He was one of 40 young men in the history of the Boy Scouts organization in Crystal City to earn the coveted rank of Eagle Scout. Bill graduated from Crystal City High School in 1934, and after high school he attended Texas A&M University where he graduated in 1938 with a Mechanical Engineering degree.
Bill's first job took him to Jennings, Louisiana where he met and married his beloved "Bunny", Myrtle Jackson. The two then moved to the East Coast where Bill worked as a draftsman at the shipyard in Newport News, VA. From 1941-1946, he was an agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, participating in their sabotage investigations. For 59 years he was a member of the San Antonio chapter of the Society of Former Special Agents of the FBI, earning the distinction of the oldest living member in that chapter.
After WWII, Bill returned to Crystal City, his adopted hometown, to raise his family. He purchased the Crystal City Machine Shop from his father and operated it for over 40 years, helping to keep the oil and agriculture industries in the Winter Garden rolling. An involved member of his community, Bill attended the First Baptist Church, volunteered as fireman, and served as member and president of the Crystal City school board. Fascinated with the Mexican culture, Bill was a bull fighting aficionado and took many short trips into the interior. Retirement in the 1980's afforded him the opportunity to pursue many interests. He and Myrtle enjoyed traveling. He got his pilot's license, bought a small plane, and logged over 700 hours flying around the United States. He was also an avid woodworker who had a knack for solving everyday problems with his creations. In 2010, Bill and Myrtle moved to Driftwood, TX to be nearer his daughters. Though not as physically active as in South Texas, Bill kept busy reading books on his iPad, googling countless topics of interest, and keeping up with current events.
Throughout his life, Bill served as an inspiration to all who knew him. He will be forever remembered for his wit, his curiosity, and his love of technology. He will be missed.
Bill Brennan is predeceased by his parents and his brother-in-law Jack White Jeffrey.
Bill is survived by his loving wife of 72 years, Myrtle; his three daughters: Sandra Carr and her husband Don of Driftwood, Carole San Miguel and her husband Arthur of Austin, Debra Torstrick and her husband Fred of Jackson, TN; his only sister Marian Jeffrey of Waco; six grandchildren: Michael Carr and his wife Leslie of Bellingham, MA, Cathy Carr of Los Angeles, CA, Amanda Walls and her husband Brian of Derby, KS, Beth San Miguel of Austin, Fielden Torstrick and his wife Kelly of Knoxville, TN, Brennan Torstrick of Atlanta, GA; six great-grandchildren: Alexander, Ethan, and Ella Carr of Bellingham, Brady, Austin, and Jackson Walls of Derby; a nephew James Jeffrey and niece Jaclyn Jeffrey; and several grand and great-grand nieces and nephews. If desired, memorials may be made to the American Diabetes Association, the Heart Hospital of Austin, or to the charity of your choice.