The Times West Virginian


April 25, 2014

William McLaughlin

William Thomas McLaughlin II (Bill), 76, passed away peacefully at his home in Bonita Springs, Fla., on April 22, 2014, following a long and courageous battle with cancer.

A lifelong West Virginian and proud Mountaineer, Bill was born to Lorena Droppleman and William Thomas McLaughlin on June 23, 1937, in Weston.  

After obtaining a B.S. Degree in Business Administration from West Virginia University, Bill began his career in banking as an examiner for the FDIC. In 1967, he became an auditor for Community Bank & Trust, N.A. (CB&T), Fairmont, where he advanced to chairman, president and CEO.

From this position, he began a campaign to change state banking laws to allow branch banking and bank holding companies. Bill was the first president of the Progressive Bankers Association for banks willing to work for modernizing banking laws. In 1992, he negotiated the sale of CB&T to Huntington Bancshares, Inc. and continued to serve as Chairman and CEO of Huntington Banks of WV.  

Throughout his career, Bill’s leadership and vision benefited more than the banking industry. Some of the many state and civic organizations that have enjoyed his valuable help include the Fairmont Industrial Credit Corp., the Marion County Chamber of Commerce, Fairmont State University Board of Advisors, the West Virginia Board of Regents, WVU College of Business and Economics Advisory Board, the Finance Committee for Ruby Memorial Hospital, the Clary Center of the Arts and Sciences, and the Davis & Elkins College Board of Trustees. He was also named to the West Virginia Business Hall of Fame and was the 1996 WVU Alumni of the Year.  

Following his retirement in 1996, Bill moved to “Bernadette Mountain” outside of Elkins with his wife of 54 years, the former Ruth Ann Walker. In 2000, they began spending winters in Bonita Springs, Fla., where they extended their wide circle of friends.

Throughout his life, Bill enjoyed snow skiing, fishing, camping, WVU athletics, bocce ball and, most importantly, spending time with family and friends. From the days of tailgate parties at Mountaineer Field, he enjoyed planning and hosting reunions and get-togethers with Ruth Ann. Throughout his illness, he continued to make his friends and family smile with his quick wit and great sense of humor.   

Bill was preceded in death by his parents; a brother, Michael McLaughlin; a sister, Roseanne (McLaughlin) Wilson; and a son, David.  

In addition to his wife, he leaves behind six adult children, Sally Cline, Sam and his wife Lisa McLaughlin, Amy and her husband Marty Ball, Matt and his wife Donna McLaughlin, Gretchen and her husband Jamie Stup, and Lisa Jenson and her husband Patrick Murray; six grandchildren, Emily Cline, Andrew and Jessica Ball, Quinn and Hayden Stup, and Jared Jenson; a sister, Mary Alice (McLaughlin) Boyd and her husband Mel; a brother, Robert McLaughlin and his wife Mary; a sister-in-law, Marian McLaughlin-Kidd; a brother-in-law, Gary Walker and his wife Ginny; many nieces and nephews; and many friends who he held close to his heart.

Following a memorial service in Bonita Springs, Fla., today, a funeral Mass will be held at 10 a.m. on Monday, May 19, at St. Peter the Fisherman Catholic Church, Fairmont, followed by a luncheon at the Fairmont Field Club.  

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the General Unrestricted Scholarship/Research Fund, care of the WVU Foundation, Inc., One Waterford Place, 7th Floor, P.O. Box 1650, Morgantown, WV 26507-1650.  Checks should be made payable to WVUF-CEHS (McLaughlin Memorial). Donations will help support scholarships and loan funds for needy students.

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