Bill Kennedy, pharmaceutical retiree

July 12, 2021

Bill Kennedy, 76, of Lewes passed away peacefully Sunday, June 11, 2021, surrounded by his family. He was born in Watervliet, N.Y., resided in several states but settled in Delaware in 1986, eventually calling Lewes his home.

Bill was born to parents Jim and Marjorie Kennedy Dec. 4, 1944. He graduated from La Salle Institute in Troy, N.Y., and earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in biology from Siena College and Clark University, respectively. While a student, Bill was drafted to serve in the Vietnam War and was stationed at the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. After an honorable discharge, Bill earned his Ph.D. in pharmacology from SUNY Buffalo. He was on the faculty of Yale Medical School conducting research in recombinant DNA biochemistry.

Bill worked for several pharmaceutical companies, eventually becoming the executive vice president of drug and regulatory affairs at Zeneca Pharmaceuticals. His proudest professional accomplishment was his assistance with the development and passage of the Food and Drug Administration Modernization Act of 1997, Public Law 105-115, which included the reauthorization of the crucial Prescription Drug User Fee Act.

After retirement, his proudest personal accomplishment was authoring three novels about a CIA operative spy, Jonathan West. “First Kill,” “Morally Grey” and “The Pentagon Years” received rave reviews and are all available on Amazon. 

A lifelong car lover, Bill spent decades restoring a rare 1958 190SL Mercedes. He was also an avid reader and golfer. On Oct. 7, 2010, he celebrated his first hole-in-one at Kings Creek Country Club in Rehoboth Beach.

Bill was a loving and devoted husband, father, grandfather and brother. He’s survived by his wife of 54 years, Mary, and three children: Susan, John (Shelly Faulkner) and Morgan. He is also survived by three grandchildren (Taylor, Ashley and Brennan), and his two sisters, Karole Doyle (Richard) and Patricia Majer (Ted). All will miss him dearly.

A Celebration of Life Ceremony will be held Friday, July 30, from 4 to 7 p.m., at Kings Creek Country Club in Rehoboth. 

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