William “Bill” Butler Blake IV, 65, of Ronceverte, WV, passed away Thursday, June 8, 2017, at Mapleshire Nursing Center in Morgantown, WV.
Bill was born February 25, 1952, in Ronceverte, a son of Virginia Lee Butler Blake and the late Norman Bradbury Blake.
As a child, he was a Cub Scout, Boy Scout, and achieved the God and Country Award, one of the highest honors a Scout can receive. He was also a member of the Episcopal Church of the Incarnation, where he served as acolyte and crucifer for 10 years.
For most of his life, Bill was an avid music fan and musician. At a very young age, he and four other youngsters formed a band called The Cobras, later to be known as The Nightwalkers. After high school, the band went their separate ways, and Bill and some college friends established a band called The BC Dasher Blues Band.
Bill attended Marshall University in Huntington, WV, where he joined a pre-law group, and they attended seminars on international relations at the United Nations Building in New York City. He then transferred to WVU, where he graduated with a B.A. degree in political science. After graduation, Bill had to make a big decision on life – whether to go on to law school or to pursue a career in music, which was his real passion. He chose music.
In 1976, he founded and produced The Skyline Bluegrass Festival at his family’s farm on a mountain overlooking Ronceverte. Bill was able to book well-known performers/entertainers, such as Bill Monroe, John Hartford, Doc Watson, and the Putnam County Pickers, of which the now famous Kathy Mattea was a member.
Surviving him, other than his mother, are his sister, Beverly B. Boswell of Ronceverte; nephews, Troy L. Boswell and wife, Shannon, of Ronceverte and C. Brad Boswell of San Diego, CA; and a grandniece, Brooke A. Boswell of Carbonado, WA.
A memorial services will be held Tuesday, June 13, 2017, at 2 PM at the Episcopal Church of the Incarnation in Ronceverte with the Revs. Betsy Walker and Stephen Baldwin officiating.
Flowers are welcome, and the family asks that sympathy donations be made to the WVU Cancer Center in Blake’s memory or to Ruby Memorial Hospital in Morgantown.
Condolences may be sent by visiting www.WallaceandWallaceFH.com.
Wallace & Wallace Funeral Home in Ronceverte is in charge of arrangements.
Obituary originally published in the June 12, 2017, edition of The West Virginia Daily News.