Billie Ann Dutter, 85, a resident of Greenwich for 53 years, passed away peacefully at her home in Greenwich on October 8, 2013, after a brave 10-month battle with cancer. She touched the lives of all who had the good fortune of knowing her fearless spirit, her generous nature, her force of personality and, most of all, her boundless love.
Billie was passionate about her family and her close friends. She cherished time with them and loved to entertain guests in Greenwich and in Tucson, Arizona, where she and her husband Philip spent winters for over 25 years. She was a world traveler, a lover of art, architecture and fine cuisine, a devoted Yankee fan, an inveterate mystery reader, and a master of board games. Her devotion to her grandchildren was unparalleled.
She was born on January 10, 1928, in Huntington, Indiana, the only child of Carl Marquart and Alma Schaefer. She grew up surrounded by a close-knit extended family of cousins, aunts and uncles in the Schaefer and Drover families; her ancestor Henry Drover, an emigrant from Prussia, had been a founder of Huntington in the late 1850s.
After graduating from Huntington High School in 1945, she attended Purdue University knowing that her parents would only be able to afford a single year of higher education. Following her brief collegiate experience, she graduated from International Business College in Ft. Wayne, Indiana and helped manage Kerber Jewelers in Ft. Wayne.
She met her future husband, Philip Dutter, in 1949. After their wedding in February 1950, they moved to New York City, where Billie supported Philip as he attended the NYU School of Business. She became an executive assistant at the McCann Erickson advertising agency, where she worked for the legendary executives Marion Harper Jr. and Emerson Foote. She left McCann after the birth of her first son, Gordon, in 1960; she had her second son, Andrew, in 1964.
Billie volunteered tirelessly in the Greenwich public schools, first as president of the North Street School PTA and then leading numerous parent-teacher initiatives at Central Junior High School and Greenwich High School. She was pool and swim team chair at the Greenwich Country Club during the 1970s and was treasurer of Greenwich's state champion Sharks Swim Team.
She leaves behind her adoring husband of 63 years, Philip; her son Gordon and his wife Anna of Springwater, NY; her son Andrew and his wife Amy of Fairfield, CT; and her three grandchildren, Timothy, Jeffrey and Kyle, of Fairfield, CT.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Kids in Crisis at http://www.kidsincrisis.org/
or 203-622-6556. To leave an online condolence please visit www.leopgallaghergreenwich.com