Devoted husband and father, dedicated educator
William Norin, a longtime Claremont resident, died on August 31, 2013 after a long illness. He was 85.
Mr. Norin was born in Berkeley, California on January 8, 1928 and grew up and went to school in Albany, California. He served in the Army, shipping out to Japan toward the end of World War II. Upon his return, he enrolled at San Francisco State University where he obtained his teaching credential.
Mr. Norin got a job teaching second, fourth and fifth grades in Concord, California. During the summers he would work at Yosemite and it is there, in 1952, that he met his future wife, Pat, who was on vacation. They were married in 1954, a loving union that would last 59 years.
He later returned to San Francisco University, where he earned his master’s degree and administrative credential. The Norins moved to San Diego in 1957, where Mr. Norin served as curriculum coordinator with the San Diego County Office of Education. He then became director of curriculum with the Poway Unified School District in Poway, California. Mr. Norin received his PhD from UCLA in 1964. In 1971, he moved to Claremont where he became assistant superintendent in the Charter Oak School District.
Mr. Norin had a passion for education and, throughout his career as a school administrator, maintained that he missed the classroom. Despite his dedication to work, he always found time for his sons, Thomas, Steve and Scott. A sports fan himself, Mr. Norin was supportive of their forays into activities like Little League. He believed it was important to make his children feel important and would take each of them, in turn, on “mystery trips.” On such occasions, the boys didn’t know what their destination was; they just knew they were going somewhere special with dad.
After retirement, Mr. Norin worked part-time at the University of La Verne as an associate professor teaching a doctoral cluster and administering the second tier of the administrative credential. He became president of Region 15 of the association of school administrators, which encompassed all of Los Angeles County.
Mr. Norin was an avid reader, devouring autobiographies, biographies and historical nonfiction. He shared with his wife a passion for travel and the couple traveled throughout Europe over the years, from Paris to Prague, as well as to Canada and Mexico. Mr. Norin’s other hobbies included tennis, golf, membership in the local computer club, genealogy, coin collecting, traveling and crossword puzzles. He volunteered at the Planes of Fame air museum in Chino and delighted in joining his old tennis buddies, a group called “The Geezers,” at the Euro Café for coffee.
“William was a loving father and devoted family man,” his family shared. “His sense of humor kept everyone laughing.”
Mr. Norin’s son, Thomas Norin, preceded him in death. He is survived by his sons and daughters-in-law, Steve and Jennifer Norin of Upland and Scott and Amy Norin of Anaheim Hills; by his grandchildren, Jeffrey and Mollie Norin and Andrew and Abagail Norin; and by his sister, Phyllis Van Ness of Walnut Creek.
A family celebration will be held on a later date. The family asks that memorial donations be made to the Casa Colina Foundation (255 E. Bonita Ave., Pomona CA 91769) or to the Claremont Chapter of VNA Hospice and Palliative Care of Southern California (150 W. First St., Suite 270, Claremont, CA 91711).