Cover photo for William David Langenes's Obituary
1944 William 2023

William David Langenes

March 5, 1944 — February 16, 2023

Portland, OR

Bill was a fan of the Oregon Ducks, Brooklyn Dodgers, jazz-especially Dave Brubeck, Bill Evans, Miles Davis, Ahmad Jamal, and Manhattan Transfer singing “A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square,” brownies, old movies, picnics, reading mysteries, road trips, cooking pork carnitas, BBQ ribs, chili, and sheet pan chicken recipes while listening to and singing along to 50’s-60’s music from his high school era. His favorite art was early 20th century such as Edward Hopper and Thomas Hart Benton. He wrote the first draft of a fiction book. He was crazy about Palm Springs and feeling the warmth of the sun. Bill enjoyed Los Angeles history through museums, architecture, and movies and thought he would’ve liked living there in the 1930’s.

Bill graduated from New Rockford High School and earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with majors in Marketing and Journalism at the University of North Dakota. His career spanned 45 years in marketing communications in Silicon Valley, California, in Portland, in Vancouver, Washington, and Baltimore, Maryland.

Bill’s volunteer work included the Santa Clara Multiple Sclerosis Society when he was newly diagnosed in 1982. He drove other newly diagnosed to meetings and lectures.

He took petitions to end the Vietnam War to North Dakota Senator Burdick.

Bill wrote for and canvassed neighborhoods for candidates in North Dakota, Minnesota, Oregon, California, and Maryland.

He helped other activists stop the Mt. Hood freeway through SE Portland. Bill wrote the newsletter for STOP, Sensible Transportation Options for People.

When little children and their teacher were killed by a mass shooter in Sandy Hook Elementary, Bill joined the Brady campaign and worked on their Legal Action website. Portland volunteer work included Brady Campaign and Lift Every Voice Oregon (LEVO) petition drives, demonstrations, accompanying the youth at St. Andrew Catholic Church to visit their Senators offices with their letters pleading for reducing gun violence.

Bill was at home, surrounded by family when he died from a stroke complicated by multiple sclerosis. He was preceded in death by his parents, Frances Phillips Hawkinson and David William Langenes, and his son, J. Michael Langenes. He is survived by his sister Jane Langenes who lives on Whidbey Island, Washington, his son David William Langenes, an accomplished musician and Marie Reiniger Langenes, his wife of 56 years, both living in Portland.

In lieu of flowers please make donations to Lift Every Voice Oregon (LEVO) in support of continued gun safety reform. Checks can be mailed to P.O. Box 12508, Portland, OR 97212.

Contributions can also be made here:


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