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Thursday, August 18, 2022

William C. Lickle, Eclipse Award winning steeplechase owner, died Aug. 19

GREENVILLE, Del.--William Cauffiel Lickle, 92, retired financial executive, steeplechase owner and larger-than-life family man, died on Thursday, Aug. 19 at his home in Greenville, Delaware.

William LickleWilliam C. LickleAs a steeplechase owner for 34 years, Bill was, upon his retirement in 2005, the second leading owner for money won in steeplechase history.

His steeplechase winner Corregion won the Eclipse Award in 1996.

He was the recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup in 1984 with Sintra, presented by the Queen herself at Keeneland.

He was the National Steeplechase Association's Owner of the Year in 1991, '92 and  '97. 

His racing silks and trophies are on display in the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame in Saratoga, N.Y., and in the Steeplechase Hall of Fame in Camden, S.C.

Additional involvement in the world of steeplechase included his time as aas a Director and Treasurer of The Breeders' Cup.

He was the co-founder of the Winterthur Point-to-Point Races and served as its Director.

He was Chairman of the Race Committee of the  Fair Hill Races , he founded the  Thoroughbred Racing Communications, N.Y.., he was a Director of the Steeplechase Owners & Trainers Association and a Director od the Turf Club, Delaware Park, Delaware Racing Association and a member of The Coaching Club of America; National Steeplechase Museum and The National Steeplechase Association.

BORN AUG. 2, 1929, in Wilmington, Del. to the late Charles and Hazel (Cauffiel) Lickle, he was a graduate of Tower Hill School where he met the love of his life, Renee Carpenter Kitchell whom he married in 1950.

Bill fearlessly danced at death's door throughout life; from emergency landings on planes, to narrowly escaping Castro's revolution in Cuba, being first on scene of an accident and ready to jump into action, having vertebrae in his neck "liquefy" from a bacterial infection, to having not one, but two cerebral shunts placed at the age of 87 and generally defying most medical odds - shocking doctors was his claim to fame.

To say he lived life to its fullest is more than an understatement. Known for his bright, passionate, and curious mind, Bill will be remembered for his wisdom - gracious with his time and advice.

He earned his bachelor's degree as well as his law degree from the University of Virginia.

He was admitted to the Virginia Bar Association in 1953 and the U.S. Supreme Court Bar in 2012.

While attending UVA, he was named to the Dean's List, received Intermediate Honors and was a member of Omicron Delta Kappa, The Raven Society, Emeritus Society, and Dean's Council of the School of Law.

Together with his brother, DC, they won the UVA Golf Championship and Links Championship, playing for Kappa Alpha.

His distinguished 35-year-long career in finance began most notably at age 36 with Laird Bissell & Meeds of which he was Chairman & CEO from 1957-1973, Dean Witter & Co. (Director, Senior VP, 1973-1977), Delaware Trust Co. (Chairman & CEO, 1977-1988), JPMorgan International Holdings; additionally the Florida & Delaware Divisions (Chairman & CEO, 1989-1993).

His expertise in finance led to his appointment by President Reagan to the President's Export Council in 1988.

After his retirement from JPMorgan in 1993, he devoted his love of books and history to create Lickle Publishing, Inc. which produced coffee table books and childrens' books.

Lickle Publishing was sold to Charlesbridge Publishing in 2006; he remained involved as consulting editor.

Bill's continued dedication to his alma mater included serving as President of the Board of Managers for University of Virginia's Alumni Association, and as Director Emeritus & Vice Chairman of the UVA's Jefferson Scholars Foundation, where he endowed the William C. Lickle Scholarship.

Over the years he took an active role in his community, contributing his time to the Delaware Community Foundation, Better Business Bureau of Delaware (Co-Founder), the Boys & Girls Club of Wilmington (Director & Treasurer), the Delaware Museum of Natural History, Winterthur Museum Garden & Library, the Grand Opera House, and the Brandywine River Museum of Art. He also served as commissioner of the New Castle County Airport.

In Florida, Bill served on the board of the Raymond F. Kravis Center for the Performing Arts, Inc., and was also involved with the Society of the Four Arts, Planned Parenthood of Palm Beach, and the Palm Beach Civic Association.

An accomplishment he was proud to help execute was while serving as director and treasurer of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Delaware where he devoted much effort into the 1965 merger of the Delaware, Memorial and Wilmington General Hospitals into a unified hospital system with more than 1,000 beds to become the Wilmington Medical Center (now Christiana Care).

As a trustee of Thomas Jefferson University Medical College, Bill helped to establish an educational affiliation between the WMC and Jefferson.

Passionate about each and every one of his endeavors, he enjoyed big-game fishing, sailing, shooting, and flying for many years - all with his best friend Renee by his side.

At the age of 28, he flew solo for the first time and became an officially licensed pilot.

Bill was a member of many professional organizations over the years including the NROTC; Society of Colonial Wars; Magna Charta Barons, Philadelphia, PA; and Sons of the American Revolution.

He was a present or past member of the Wilmington Country Club, Vicmead Hunt Club, Wilmington Club, Bath & Tennis Club, Everglades Club, Palm Beach Polo & Country Club, Saratoga Golf & Polo Club, Coral Beach Club, Lyford Cay Club, Rolling Rock Club, and Seminole Golf Club.

Bill will be remembered by his many friends and family across the globe as the life of the party, a man of seemingly endless adventures and travels, who could vividly recount every detail as he shared many of his seemingly unrealistic stories.

He is survived by his wife and partner of 71 years, Renee Carpenter Kitchell. his children Sydney Jordan (Peter), Garrison Lickle (Michele Henry), Ashley O'Neil (Pierce) and Kemble O'Donnell (Bill); his grandchildren Peyton Lindley (Jeannie), Hunter Lindley, Cameron Lickle, Sasha Lickle, Blair Lindley, Hayley O'Donnell (Giovanni), Morgan Shaddock (John), Emory Hall (Trevor), Colby O'Neil, Tyler O'Neil, Layton O'Donnell, and Scout O'Donnell; great-grandchildren Walker Lindley, Margeaux Lindley, Harper McEneaney, India Shaddock and Kailash Hall. He was preceded in death by his brother Daniel C. Lickle and his granddaughter Christen O'Donnell.

A celebration of life will be held on Friday, Aug. 27, 2021 at 12:00 p.m. at The Vicmead Hunt Club, 903 Owls Nest Road, Wilmington, Del 19807.

Burial will be private at the du Pont Cemetery.

For online condolences, please visit Chandlerfuneralhome.com, to plant trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.


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