William “Bill” Twomey, a lifelong Throggs Neck resident, Bronx historian, and the creator and author of the popular Bronx Times column “Do You Remember,” died on Friday, June 20 at age 73.
Twomey, who had a deep love for Bronx history, wrote several books on his favorite subject in addition to writing the column that helped get the Bronx Times off the ground.
“His column was part of the reason for the paper’s early success,” said Bronx Times co-founder John Collazzi. “He cared greatly about each column he wrote.”
Twomey enjoyed the process of researching and talking to people in order to learn about the East Bronx’s history, said his wife of 33 years, Carol, who added that over the years he acquired an amazing amount of knowledge about the area.
“I can’t think of any place he didn’t know something about,” she said.
His family said Twomey was constantly sharing that knowledge. When Twomey drove his daughter Erin to a friend’s house, she said she would get a history lesson of whichever street they were driving on.
His combined love of history and his neighborhood lead him to found the East Bronx History Forum in 2005, said friend Tom Casey, to help bring life back to the Huntington Free Library.
Under Twomey’s leadership, the Forum grew to more than 200 members, with about 50 people attending each meeting.
Twomey and Casey collaborated on historical research and explored the Bronx together. Although Casey met Twomey in 1999 through Bronx historian John McNamara, he said Twomey felt like a brother.
“I feel like I grew up with him, that’s the feeling he imparted,” said Casey. “Anybody who got to meet Bill walked away with the same feeling.”
Twomey was also a member of St. Frances de Chantal parish, where he was involved with the Holy Name Society and the Nocturnal Adoration Society. He was also a commander of the Sea Cadet Star of the Sea Battalion at the church, his family said.
Twomey served for years on the executive board of the Throggs Neck Home Owners Association, and had a successful career in the law department at Con Edison.
Above all else, Twomey was a devoted family man, his wife said.
His daughter, Erin, called him “the best father you could ask for.”
The Bronx Times will continue to run Twomey’s popular column.
Along with his wife and daughter, he is survived by a son, Sean.
Services for Twomey were held on Monday, June 23 and Tuesday, June 24 at Schuyler Hill Funeral Home and St. Frances de Chantal church.