"He loved living in Mountain View," Ware's brother, Jim, told the Voice a few days after the June 21 accident.
Ware was born March 13, 1962 in San Francisco, and spent the majority of his youth living in the foothills of San Jose. He moved to Mountain View in 1990 — the same year he married his wife, Barbara — and the two of them lived in the same apartment throughout their marriage.
According to Jim Ware, his brother's love for his wife was only matched by his love for Mountain View — a city that, by many accounts, loved him back.
Ware was well known by law enforcement, fire department officials, city council members, librarians and organizers of the Art & Wine Festival, according to his niece, Dolores Marquez.
Her uncle had "special needs," Marquez said, and he frequently introduced himself to police and firefighters whenever he would encounter them on the street. "Bill loved talking to people and would do so without hesitation," she said.
According to her, as the police got to know Ware, they sometimes even assigned him small tasks and he would always gladly take them on.
"The Mountain View library staff was extremely saddened to hear of William's tragic death," said Rosanne Macek, director of library services. "He was a regular here, and a great favorite with the staff. He was always friendly and helpful, and enjoyed chatting with us. We will all miss him very much and our heartfelt condolences go out to his family."
The 50-year-old Ware could very well have been on his way to the library when he was struck by the car that killed him, according to Cornell Fowler, a local man who described Ware as a "gentle giant."
"He rode that bus every day," Fowler said of Ware, referring to the bus he was apparently waiting for when he was hit. Fowler first met Ware at the library about 10 years ago and fondly remembers volunteering alongside him.
Ware also often spoke in City Council meetings, always noting that he was "happy to be here."
"He was such a cheerleader for Mountain View," Fowler said.
According to Jim Ware, the family once tried to get his brother to move out to Sacramento, where they would all be able to live closer together. The Mountain View resident refused. "It was just home," his brother said of the city. He knew people, people knew him and they liked him.
"He was one of the nicest guys you'd ever meet," Fowler said. "He was probably waving at the car that hit him."
That car, according to police, was a gray sedan, driven by a 21-year-old Mountain View man, who may have been driving at an excessive speed.
Though police are still conducting their investigation, the surviving Ware and his daughter, Marquez, said witnesses to the accident told them the car that killed the long-time Mountain View resident was likely traveling around 70 mph — twice the posted speed limit of 35 mph — when the driver lost control and careened off the road shortly before 9:30 a.m. in the 1800 block of California Street, taking out two trees, a pole and, according to his family, dismembering Ware. He was pronounced dead on the scene by emergency responders.
Photos posted to the Voice's website by a witness to the accident show that the car involved was severely damaged with a mangled hood, smashed windshield and at least one tire bent on its axle to the point that it is nearly parallel to the flat ground beneath it
Liz Wylie, spokeswoman for the Mountain View Police Department, said police do believe "speed was a factor" in the accident, but couldn't comment on how fast the car may have been going at the time of the accident.
Police did not arrest the driver of the car that hit Ware, nor are they releasing his name. A full investigation must be conducted first, Wylie said. Until then, police cannot charge the driver reckless driving or manslaughter. It does not appear that drugs or alcohol were a factor in the crash and the driver remained on the scene after the crash, cooperating with police before he was ultimately transported to a local hospital.
Ware's family feel confident that the driver of the car will ultimately be arrested. They believe the driver deserves punishment for Ware's "100-percent preventable" death.
"All we want is justice for Billy," Marquez said, noting that the family is not seeking to gain financially from the incident.
Ware is survived by his wife Barbara, his father William Ware of Asheville, N.C.; his brother Jim and Jim's wife Helen of Placerville, Calif.; and his sister Heather (Ware) Bogle and her husband Rich of Astoria, Ore.
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