Highland Haven residents gather to celebrate William’s big 3-0



William Fowler's family chipped in to buy this cake as well as the fried chicken and pizza he wanted for his 30th birthday party last Friday. Family and neighbors gathered at the Highland Haven Community Center to celebrate.

By Emily Hilley-Sierzchula

Highland Haven residents held an inaugural birthday party on Friday, Sept. 19, for William Fowler, a citizen who touches his small community every day.

City administration announced the party on its digital sign in front of city hall. Laura Bearden described her cousin’s reaction when he saw it.

“He said, ‘My name’s in lights!’”

William, 30, who is mildly mentally disabled, has lived in Highland Haven for at least 15 years. He is as good a citizen as his namesake, his grandfather William, who was loved by the community.

The Ladies’ Club has come to depend on him to set up tables for their annual rummage sale.

Bearden has known William since he was born. “He’s a hard worker, enthusiastic about everything he does,” she said, describing howWilliam helps residents and makes a few bucks too, by dog-and-cat sitting, watering flowers and helping to maintain Dove Park.

“He’s involved: he likes how people stop and talk to him, he’s so much a part of this community,” Bearden said.

“William’s just the nicest guy,” said Irene Dauphin. “He helps clean up the boat launch and puts flyers out to the neighborhood.”

He also has a competitive streak. 

For the full story, see Friday's Highlander.

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