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Obituary: William C. Aden, Jr.

William C. Aden, Jr., longtime Manhasset resident and avid volunteer in the lives of the community’s youth, died Dec. 30, 2009 in Chapel Hill, NC, ending a struggle with muscular dystrophy. He was 76 years old.

Bill was an active, outgoing, gregarious man who never found himself in more welcome company than when surrounded by a crowd of high-spirited children. He had a natural, easy way with them and involved himself everywhere in their play. His own son led him in 1978 to Plandome’s Boy Scout troop 71, and there he found his true calling.

Almost immediately, Bill stepped in as new scoutmaster and, over a subsequent career lasting long past his own child’s involvement, revitalized the troop. No part of the organization missed his attention, but with a special passion for the outdoors, Bill threw his energies into building a year-round program of rugged adventure. From hiking and climbing to whitewater canoeing to winter “igloo” camping and, in summer, ex5nificent high country, Bill’s adventures took the troop to many wild and beautiful places throughout the Northeast. It won the boys over, earned their devotion and fostered an equal passion in them.

In 1989, Bill’s scouts paid him the tribute of an award named in his honor. To this day, each year, the William C. Aden Award is given to one scout “For Outstanding Outdoorsmanship.”

Bill retired as scoutmaster in 1993. Much as he had relished all the rugged adventure himself, what he came to value most of all in his experience with Troop 71, was the opportunity it afforded him to guide and encourage the growth of its boys into good young men – self-reliant, ready for challenge and inclined by his example to civic contribution. For 15 years, Bill exerted a shaping influence on countless Manhasset youth, many of whom kept him, through correspondence, in their lives long after he had stepped down and moved away. He savored every reminiscence with them.

Another passion of Bill’s was his participation in the Plandome Volunteer Fire Department. His involvement lasted throughout his years as a resident.

From 1957 until 1972, Bill worked as a freelance writer, copywriter for CBS Radio Network and director of Creative Services for both CBS and Viacom. In 1972, he created and served as president of Aden Advertising until his retirement in 1994.

Bill Aden is survived by his beloved wife, Trudy, and their two children Karen of Campbell, CA and Bill of Berkeley, CA.

Those wishing to honor his memory may make donations to Plandome Boy Scout Troop 71.