Dr. William Hoover Gosnell

April 12, 1932January 24, 2023
Obituary of Dr. William Hoover Gosnell
William is survived by his beautiful wife of 71 years, Wanda, and two sons, Bill (wife-Dayna Wenzel) and Rob (wife-Christa Fox), grandchildren Tyler Gosnell and Julie Gosnell. He was preceded in death by his parents Walter and Estella Gosnell and his older brother, Vernon Gosnell. William was born and raised in Bartlesville, Oklahoma. He attended Bartlesville High School, Central Christian College, Northwestern Illinois and Illinois College of Optometry where he graduated Cum Laude. At eighteen, he married his high school sweetheart, Wanda Orr. While he studied Optometry, she secured a career with Phillips 66, and transferred to Chicago, so they could be together. Following graduation, he was inducted into the United States Army. After basic training, he got his commission as a second lieutenant and went to Fort Dix Army Hospital in New Jersey and Madigan Army Hospital in Tacoma, Washington. After discharge, the family settled in Independence, Missouri. They attended First Christian Church, where he was a Sunday School teacher. Dr. Gosnell was in private practice for 60 years. He had offices on the Country Club Plaza in Kansas City and Independence. William was a member of service clubs and professional organizations. He served as President of the Optimist Club, Englewood Lions Club, Independence Bass Masters, Vision Service Plan Missouri Charter and the Greater Kansas City Optometric Society. In the middle of his career, he also authored a book, "Handbook of Ocular Therapy.” Many hobbies and interests fulfilled his energetic lifestyle. A lifetime of golfing, card games, trout and bass fishing, quail and duck hunting. He was an avid photographer and painter. Scrimshaw and Ivory sculpting also occupied a few years of his art interests. William and his family spent several vacations on Nantucket Island and Cape Cod. Later, they loved hosting parties and enjoying water sports at their Lake Lotawana home. He and his wife traveled throughout Europe, and a number of cruises: Asia, Africa and South America. He loved a great meal, a fine Scotch and a hearty laugh! Dr. Gosnell was blessed to have a long life, and he filled it with many adventures, alongside people he loved! He will be greatly missed by his family, friends and patients! If you knew him, you heard him tell a joke and a story! He LOVED an audience! So, in honor of his memory, we leave you with this: "If you inherit land, you must farm it, if you inherit a story, you must tell it." -- Swahili quote from The Grief Roadmap: Finding Your Road After Life and Loss by Bruce Leisy

Show your support

Past Services

Sunday, February 05, 2023


Sunday, February 05, 2023

Celebration of Life