Dr. William Knox Gordon III

Dr. William Knox “Bill” Gordon III, died peacefully in the hospital in the early morning hours of March 18, 2020.

The oldest child and only son of W. K. Gordon Jr. and Anna Melissa “Chissa“ Gordon, Bill was born on  August 16, 1943  in Fort Worth, Texas which was entered in the family bible by Sam B. Cantey III as “the hottest day of the year, temperature 111 degrees”. He was a direct descendant of two pioneer Fort Worth families, state legislator J. Y. Hogsett, who wrote the charter that turned a settlement in and around an army outpost into the  municipality of Fort Worth, and Samuel Benton Cantey, co-founder of Cantey and Capps in 1883, now known as Cantey and Hanger. It is the oldest law firm in Tarrant County.

Bill attended Woodberry Forrest and graduated from Arlington Heights High School in 1961. He finished studies at SMU and the University of North Texas and upon completing an internship at LSU Sciences Center, New Orleans, he obtained a degree in Clinical Psychology. The then Dr. Gordon became the Director of Psychological Services at the Fairhill School, Dallas, Texas where he so gently and adeptly impacted the lives of  many young children coping with learning differences. Bill’s education was interrupted by the Viet Nam War and he served his country proudly.

Upon his retirement and the death of his mother, Bill returned to his childhood River Crest home, a landmark residence designed and built in 1916 by renown Chicago architect David Adler; and embarked upon a total renovation of the historic structure. As was his nature, he undertook this daunting project with his fine tuned sense of humor and persistent outward optimism. Further keeping with family tradition, he competently assumed the oversight of cattle-raising at the Gordon Ranch in Walnut Springs, Texas.

A big-hearted man, Bill quietly and often anonymously helped and supported many people who found themselves in need both large and small.  His civic and conservancy philanthropy was deeply rooted in family tradition.

He depended on his local house manager Miguel Armenta as well as Rosa, Rafael, and Jeannie whom the family sincerely thanks for their attentive help and service. For many years, Bill enjoyed his vacation home, Casa Gordon, in Cozumel, Mexico and expressed deep gratitude for the care given by his loyal staff.   Bill always took a personal interest in the lives of those who assisted him.

Bill was an avid collector and attentive caretaker of reptiles, exotic birds, wolf dogs as well as performance Ferraris and other classic  automobiles. His latest restoration and joy was a 1960 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz convertible.

He was a member of River Crest Country Club and Kappa Sigma.

Bill was preceded in death by his parents and his only child, Joel Anthony Gordon, whose untimely death was a tragic loss which he carried with dignity and grace.

He is survived by his sister, Marguerite Melissa Gordon of Tesuque, New Mexico; foremost person in his life, Olive Penn; his wolf dog, Leander; and numerous loving cousins in the Cantey, Harrison, Kleinheinz, Philpott, Gorski, Portwood, Lydick, Hendricks, Mastin, and Ferchill families who, together with a host of lifelong and professional friends, will miss him terribly.

* This article was originally published here

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