William B. Muchmore

Mom & Dad at Oberlin 1942 copy

Muchmore, William Breuleux, PhD (July 7, 1920 – May 11, 2017) passed on peacefully at his home with his family by his side.  Predeceased by his beloved wife, Marjorie (Midge) Murrin Muchmore, he is survived by his sister Jane Simpson and brother James Muchmore, 2 daughters, Susie Reed and Patti Merhige, 7 grandchildren, Elka Armstrong (Peter), Alex Pucher (Randel), Keith Vanderzell (Mary), Adam Merhige (Shannon), Bethy Barrett (Tom), Casey Merhige, Abbey Merhige, and 10 great-grandchildren.

He served during WWII with the US Army in the South Pacific with hospital units from February, 1943 – March, 1946.

After returning from the war, he completed his PhD at Washington University in St. Louis in 1950. He spent his entire professional career at the University of Rochester, teaching Biology, and was granted Professor Emeritus upon his retirement after 36 years.  He was a world authority in his field of study, Pseudoscorpions, and had several named for him.

His work took him on many travels, including teaching in England for a year, during which time he attended a garden tea party at Buckingham Palace with the Queen in attendance – a story the grandchildren love to tell!

Always an avid naturalist, he was an Eagle Scout, a home gardener, and former member of the Genesee Ornitholigical Society.

After his “retirement”, he volunteered for 30 years at the Genesee Country Village, beginning with the Blue Bird Box Project, he also researched the history of St. Feehan’s Church, and the Village fence collection. But his favorite activity was with the “Nutt Family, Painters of Picket Fences”.  As “Hickory Nutt”, he painted with them from 1998 – 2014.

Over the past 10 years, The Farmers Library of Wheatland, NY (1805 – 1870) became a focus of interest, and he tracked down and recorded the entire collection.

Music was another favorite pastime in the Muchmore household.  He played percussion, Midge played piano, and they passed on their love for music to each of the children and grandchildren.

All of these interests were generously shared with his family, and, will be gratefully passed on to the next generation of Muchmores.

But, most importantly, as one of the grandchildren stated, “He was a kick-butt GrandPa”.

Rest in Peace, we miss you already.

Donations can be made to the Genesee Country Village and Museum.

11 Condolences

  1. RHONDA LUONGO on May 19, 2017 at 7:08 pm

    Casey, so sorry to hear of your loss. My you have many happy memories of him.

  2. Suzanne M.Thomas on May 21, 2017 at 8:11 am

    My deepest condolences to all.

  3. John and Barbara Adams on May 21, 2017 at 10:16 am

    We were pleased to have known Bill. Barb and John Adams

  4. University of Rochester, Department of Biology on May 22, 2017 at 11:26 am

    Our deepest condolences and sympathies. Dr. Muchmore was a much beloved member of our department and many will miss him.

  5. Diane Cass on May 23, 2017 at 3:18 pm

    Professor Muchmore was a frequent user of the Carlson Library at the University of Rochester, where I was a science librarian. He often took time to chat with members of the staff, who looked forward to his visits.

  6. Trina Lowery on May 26, 2017 at 10:51 am

    Professor Muchmore was truly beloved in Carlson Library, University of Rochester. He was one of the first professors I met years ago, and was one of the kindest persons I have worked with. We looked forward to his regular visits after his retirement. He will be missed. My condolences to his family.

  7. René Alberto Barba Díaz on June 13, 2017 at 4:35 pm

    Dear all,

    I am so sorry to hear the news of the deceased of W. B. Muchmore. As his student from the beginning of my career in the study of the wonderful world of Pseudoscorpions I always had a fluent correspondence with him. Even living in Cuba with a lot of problems in the communications with the United States, he always extended his solidary hand to help me with literature and wise advises in my work with this difficult group of arachnids.

    His huge contribution to the knowledge of the pseudoscorpionological fauna in the Americas was really admirable.

    I am always going to be in debt with him.

    My condolences to his family.

    René Barba Díaz
    Division of Zoological Collections and Systematics
    Institute of Ecology and Systematics

  8. Rebecca DeHority on July 7, 2017 at 5:29 pm

    I was so lucky to get to meet Dr. Muchmore and be his neighbor for the past 4 years. We enjoyed the birds (and squirrels) that he kept well fed by out our kitchen window! Condolences to the family.

  9. Ilana Seligman MD on August 6, 2017 at 1:33 pm

    To the Muchmore family:

    Dr. Muchmore was my first real mentor at U of R. Because of his encouragement and belief in me, I grew confident enough to pursue what I thought was an impossible dream – to go to medical school. I was a teaching assistant for him and he wrote me a wonderful letter that I am sure helped me secure a spot at the university’s medical school. He was nurturing, exacting, and a superb role model for pursuing a passion. At that time, not nearly as many women went into medicine. I have recently retired after a wonderful career in surgery, and must give credit to Dr. Muchmore for spurring me on. He was a wonderful teacher and a kind, encouraging soul.
    I am so sorry for your loss.

    Ilana Seligman MD FACS FAAP
    Professor of Surgery, Emeritus
    University of Chicago
    Pritzker School of Medicine
    Chicago, IL

  10. Susan Wunder on August 9, 2017 at 1:40 pm

    Hello, Muchmores! I saw Wendy Jackelow’s tribute in the Rochester Review and loved it. Such fond memories of your dad, including his taking you and me, Patti, to U of R a couple of times, and being so impressed…I ended up going there for undergrad Geology degree (went on for MS at U of Illinois) and wish I’d taken his invertebrate zoology class, it would have been a good fit into my Micropaleo studies. My condolences, our own mom died last October (96) so I know…we’re in the process of emptying the house in Rochester just a few blocks from your childhood home. Would love to hear from any of you my email is swunder2002@yahoo.com

  11. Paul Cooney on December 26, 2019 at 6:29 pm

    Hello, For a number of years I was in touch with Dr. Muchmore. He was very helpful and kind in helping me with my interest in studying pseudoscorpions. I will miss communicating with him and I send my condolences to his family.

    Sincerely, Paul Cooney

Leave a Condolence

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.