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William 'Gil' Gilmore, 64, Norwalk Lawyer

NORWALK, Conn. – William "Gil" M. Gilmore Jr. of Norwalk died suddenly May 5. He was 64.

A former lawyer and professor in Philadelphia, Gilmore recently returned to Norwalk to care for his parents. A memorial service will be held at noon Saturday at Norwalk United Methodist Church.

Born in Newark, N.J., he was the son of Emma Brantley Gilmore and William M. Gilmore Sr. He graduated from Norwalk High School in 1965, Wesleyan University in 1969 and the University of Pennsylvania Law School in 1977. Gilmore received a master's degree in business administration from Wharton School of Business and Commerce of the University of Pennsylvania in 1978.

He was admitted to the Pennsylvania Bar in 1978 and taught law at the University of Bridgeport and Universidad Central del Ecuador. He initially worked for the Pew Foundation in Philadelphia before offering free legal work and helping to establish community credit unions in Philadelphia and Chester, Pa., as well as in New Haven and West Virginia.

A member of the American Guild of Organists, he built his own harpsichord. Gilmore was also a former director of music at Calvary United Methodist Church in Philadelphia and director of Oracle, a choral and instrumental chamber ensemble.

He was also an avid cyclist and a Super Captain for the MASI team of Bike New York. Gilmore cycled throughout Europe and the Middle East. He later became a committed "transportation cyclist," advocating for bicyclists' rights.

In 1989, he left Philadelphia on a yearlong bike ride that took him to Mexico, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Panama, Colombia and on to Quito, Ecuador, earning his appellation, “the intergalactic crusader.”

Over the last few years, Gilmore was the primary caregiver of his disabled parents. His father, William, died in 2009. He is survived by his mother, Emma of Norwalk; a brother, Thomas C. Gilmore, of Norwalk; and five cousins.

Memorial donations may be made to the Norwalk United Methodist Church, 718 West Ave., Norwalk, CT 06850, or the University of Pennsylvania Law School, 3501 Samson St., Philadelphia, PA 19104.

Shaughnessey Banks Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

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