Willis M. Ertman, of Hingham, MA, passed away on Sunday, January 14, 2018, aged 90.
Born in Kingston, MA and later a long-time resident of Hingham, Willis enjoyed a long life with his family, colleagues and community. He was the child of his parents Thalia (Marion) and Clarence Sherman Ertman. His younger brother Gardner predeceased him. Willis graduated from Kingston High School, received a degree in electrical engineering from Tufts University, and later graduated from Harvard Law School.
After serving in the US Army Air Force as a cryptographic technician, Willis met his loving wife Carol (Gardner). They had four children: Deborah (Philip) of Hingham, Douglas (Lisa) of Falmouth, ME, Betsy (Tom) of Mercer Island, WA, and Jeffrey (Debra) of Scarborough, ME. Willis and Carol settled in Hingham with their young children, and Willis practiced patent law at Fish & Richardson in Boston.
In his time in Hingham, Willis was an active member of the town and served on many committees, including the School Committee, Municipal Light Board, Planning Board, Historical Society, and Congregational Church. He also served as a founding member of the Hingham Land Trust.
Willis was a lifelong learner, with a particular interest in plants and travel. He loved sailing and attending the symphony with Carol. He was a sports enthusiast and always knew the score of last night’s game.
Later in life, he enjoyed the company of his ten grandchildren as well as many nieces and nephews.
A lawyer in disposition as well as vocation, Willis could be counted on for a good debate and tough questions that get at the heart of the matter. He loved words, word play, and learning about the interests of others. Even in his last months, Willis continued to offer kindness and humor to all around him.
A service will be held at Hingham Congregational Church, 378 Main Street, Hingham, MA, on Friday, Jan 19 at 10 am. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Hingham Land Conservation Trust, P.O. Box 10, Hingham, MA 02043 or Hingham Congregational Church.