Obituary for William N. Cannon
William (Bill) Nathaniel Cannon, 90, former resident of Greenwood, Indiana passed away May 10, 2018 in Leesburg, Florida. He was born on October 15, 1927 to Anne Mae and Henry Leon Cannon in Atlanta, Georgia.
He proudly served our country in the United States Army from 1944-1946. Bill celebrated his service during a recent Honor Flight to Washington, DC on October 18, 2017—calling the trip one of the best days of his life.
Bill valued and believed in higher education. He graduated from the University of North Georgia (UNG) with a Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry in 1948. He earned his Master’s degree in Chemistry from the University of Georgia in 1950. Bill was a donor and supporter of UNG, earning the Distinguished Alumni Award in 2012. Bill worked with the UNG Chemistry Department as a champion to see the department attain its accreditation from the American Chemical Society (ACS) in 2010. Due to his continued support and guidance, the Chemistry Department named a lab in Rogers Hall as the “William N. Cannon Organic Chemistry Laboratory and Stockroom.” In support of the UNG Chemistry Department, its ACS accreditation and with the goal of helping educate more young scientists, Bill helped establish the William N. Cannon Chemistry Fund in 2006. Through that fund one student per year is awarded the scholarship to assist with their education—totaling 12 students so far that have benefited from this fund.
In 1952, Bill moved to Indianapolis, Indiana to begin his career as a chemist for Eli Lilly and Company where he served as a research scientist for 34 years. His life’s work as a chemist resulted in the discovery of many chemical compounds that led to numerous United States patents. Bill was also a member of ACS for more than 50 years, where he continuously strived to further the chemistry profession.
Bill lived in Greenwood, Indiana for many years with his former wife, Evelyn Cannon and they raised four beautiful children: Rick, Nancy, Bill and Beth. He was a lifelong member of the United Methodist Church where he served as Scoutmaster of Troop 263 for many years at Greenwood United Methodist Church. Bill was proud that both of his sons attained the highest rank of Eagle Scout. Due to his more than 25 years of leadership to Troop 263 in Greenwood, the Boy Scouts of America awarded Bill the highly-regarded Silver Beaver Award for community service to scouting.
Bill was a current and active member of Morrison United Methodist Church in Leesburg, Florida.
Survivors include his wife, Ruth Cannon in Leesburg; Bill’s children: Nancy (Glenn) Clawson and Beth (Jeff) Hicks of Greenwood, and Bill Cannon of Fort Lauderdale, Florida. He was a grandfather to Jeffrey (Laura) Clawson, Jamie (Kevin) Kidwell, Joey (Megan) Clawson, Jon Clawson, Amy Hicks and Sam Hicks. Bill was a great-grandfather to Jolie and Frankie Clawson.
Bill was preceded in death by his parents and his oldest son, Rick Cannon, formerly of Atlanta, Georgia.
Calling will be Wednesday, May 16 from 3-5 p.m. at Beyers Funeral Home, 1123 West Main Street in Leesburg. Burial is scheduled for Thursday, May 17 at 1 p.m. at Florida National Cemetery in Bushnell, Florida.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to support future chemistry students through the William N. Cannon Chemistry Fund. Please make your donation payable to the William N. Cannon Chemistry Fund and mail to: UNG Foundation, P.O. Box 1599, Dahlonega, Georgia 30533; phone: 706-867-2873.