William Shaw Ward | AspenTimes.com

William Shaw Ward

William Ward, affectionately known as Wouzle, has fallen asleep in death. He was the son of Robert W Ward and Lorraine LaTourette from New Jersey and is survived by his younger brother, John, and his nephew, Brian, who made Wouzle's eyes light up when he was called uncle.

William Ward was born July 13, 1952 in Orange, New Jersey. William's first college experience was at Georgia Tech, where he was enrolled as a nuclear physics student; it was there that he discovered the counter culture and dropped out of school. At this point, William disappeared for 3 years-probably to avoid being drafted. He finished his studies at Livingston College in New Jersey.

An outdoor sports enthusiast, the Roaring Fork valley was ideal for William. He excelled at kayaking on the local rivers where his style on the water reminded his friends of the water ouzel. Water ouzel became Wouzle, and so did William. Wouzle was also a dedicated mountain biker and was one of the early organizers of bicycle polo locally.

Wouzle's knack for detail and affinity for tools and high-tech equipment led to him being self employed in carpentry, drywall, wallpaper, computers, bicycles, kayaks, etc.

Wouzle was the timer for Aspen's World Cup, national and local ski races. Wouzle even operated his own bicycle shop, El JeBike.

Wouzle was a world traveler; he twice traveled to India to play bicycle polo. Wouzle fell in love with France and Italy during his travels there; he wanted to start a business in Italy and he thrilled at the annual TV coverage of the Tour de France as the race often travelled through the same small towns he had visited.

Wouzle's memorial will be held from noon until 3 p.m. on Sunday, September 22 on top of Aspen Mountain at the concert meadow just a short walk from the gondola. Please bring a picnic lunch and plan to visit with Wouzle's other friends for the afternoon. The gondola operates from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. and $10 discounted foot passenger tickets are available. There is access to the memorial via Summer, Midnight Mine and Little Annie's Roads for those want to drive or bike to the event. In the event the gondola is not able to operate, the memorial will be held in Paepcke Park starting at noon.

We want to plant a tree in Wouzle's memory and would appreciate donations to cover this cost; extra contributions will be donated to local drug and alcoholism treatment programs and we encourage others to make donations to the program of their own choice. Please contact Kirk at rfx150@aol.comfor more information about any of the memorial activities.

Do you know how William became Wouzle,or where he was for three years, or any other story about Wouzle's exploits, please join us on Sunday, the 22nd, and share the story with us; we hope to see you there.

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