Madison County Board member William S. “Bill” Meyer died Jan. 5 due to health complications, according to a county news release, which lauded his commitment to constituents.
Meyer, a Republican, spent 18 years serving County Board District 3 and 22 years as a Village of Hamel trustee and six years as Village of Hamel president. Meyer served on the board from 2000 to 2016 and 2020 to 2023. He also served on various committees to include building and zoning, transportation, grants and finance.
Board Chairman Kurt Prenzler was quoted in the release as saying Meyer served his district faithfully.
“Bill was ‘Mr. Hamel,’” Prenzler said. “He represented northeast Madison County well and used his experience in business on the County Board.”
County Board member Mick Madison of Bethalto said Myer would be missed. He said although he didn’t get along with Myer when he first got on the board, over time the two became friends. Madison said that due to Myers’ health, he was disappointed he could no longer do his favorite activity.
“He liked doing everything he could for Hamel and his district,” Madison said. “He loved to ride snowmobiles, he would go to Wisconsin to ride.”
County Board member Stacey Pace of Troy, who sat next to Meyer at County Board meetings, said she is struggling with the loss. She said Myer was honest, helpful and someone she could depend on.
“He was my friend and mentor,” Pace said.“He was someone I could call and he would give it to me straight,” she said. “He cared about his community and fought for it and for the taxpayers in the county.”
Circuit Clerk Tom McRae said he got to know Meyer when the two of them served on the County Board together. McRae said there was more to Meyer than just politics.
“Nobody worked harder than Bill,” McRae said. “It didn’t matter if it was for a park district, fire district or road project he fought for his constituents.”
Since 1980, Meyer had owned W.S. Meyer & Associates Inc. in Hamel, served as secretary-manager of Hamel Mutual Insurance Co. and was on the board of directors of First National Bank of Hamel.
“He also served in the U.S. Army during Vietnam and was shot down two weeks before he was to come home,” McRae said. “His snowmobile was even decked out like his Vietnam helicopter.”
He said Meyer was a successful man filled with lots of interests, besides snowmobiling he was also an avid car collector as well with around 20 cars.
“He is going to be missed,” McRae said.
State’s Attorney Tom Haine agreed that Meyer would be missed.
“Bill was a wonderful man and a true public servant,” Haine said. “We are in disbelief at his passing and his family is in our prayers at this difficult time.”
Meyer leaves behind his wife, Amy, along with his two daughters, Julie (Aaron) Fish and Billie (Guy) Robinson, and six grandchildren. He daughter Jennifer (Mike) Ashauer preceded him in death.
A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m., Monday Jan. 16 at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Hamel.