Roll of Honor

William O. Sensenich Sr.

William O. Sensenich Sr.

  • Firefighter
  • North Huntingdon Township, Circleville Volunteer Fire Department
  • Pennsylvania
  • Age: 69
  • Year of Death: 2015

William “Wille” Sensenich was born in 1946, weighing only three pounds and not expected to live. Fortunately, God had others plans.

Wille joined the Circleville Volunteer Fire Department in 1965, enlisted in the Army in 1966, and was deployed in the firefighting unit while serving his country with honor. Returning to his hometown, Wille worked as a welder and then in the maintenance department for the Norwin School District until his retirement. He was a CORE donor- Center for Organ Recovery and Education.

Committed to his community, Wille was an active volunteer firefighter for over 50 years. He never hesitated to respond. He was in the top ten responders for 16 years, many times as number one. Wille was fondly called the “Old Man” by his fellow firefighters. He often guided recruits or trainees into their first structure fire. Wille was old school–“you learn by doing.” He participated in the annual street fair, gun bashes, and bingo sponsored by the fire hall. He volunteered in schools teaching fire safety and giving tours of the fire station. Many children sent thank you notes saying Fireman Wille was their favorite part of the tour. Wille was a member of the Rapid Intervention Team and in earlier years, the safety officer and hose foreman for his department. Wille rescued not only people, but animals from pond, trees, sewers, and houses.

His fellow firefighters and rescue personnel were important to him. He never sought recognition for himself. Wille considered himself part of a team. Many times while on errands, the whistle would blow and the family raced to the car knowing that somewhere the fire department was needed. He instilled that type of dedication in his family.

Wille loved to fish, vacation at the beach, work in the yard, drink Coca Cola, and watch westerns. He had a great sense of humor, especially when his family pranked him. He would pretend to be mad, but the twinkle in his smiling blue eyes told a different story. But Wille’s greatest passion in life was his wife, four children, and six grandchildren. He met his true love on a blind date and married her five months later. He would often say, after 46 blessed years, “We’re still on our honeymoon.” He took great pride in his family, home, fire department, and any work he did. He was a quiet man, humble, well-known, and well-liked, often thanked for his selfless acts of kindness. Wille was a dedicated firefighter, beloved husband to Kathie; devoted daddy to Holly Jo, Bonnie, Wille, and Cindy; and proud Pap/Grandpa to William, Chase, Tressa, Dustyn, Johnny, and Katie. The standards set by this gentle hero will live on through his family.