Bill Salerno: Ogden and Union Station lose a friend

Bill Salerno | Eccles Rail Center Plans

Bill Salerno | Eccles Rail Center Plans

Bill Salerno, Ogden architect and patron of the arts, died Monday, and we at Union Station will particularly miss him.

Bill only served a year on the Union Station Foundation’s board of directors, but Foundation Executive Director Roberta Beverly said he was a long-time advocate, supporter and donor to the station.

“He was just committed to the station and the arts,” she told me Thursday morning. “He went out and spoke for the station and advocated for the station and for the arts.”

In addition to supporting the many artistic events that take place at the station, his own handiwork is all over the station. He did the architectural drawing for several projects at the station, including the Eccles Rail Center Plaza which houses our outdoor display of vintage rail engines. Roberta can’t remember him every charging for that. When Warren’s Model Train shop moved into new digs in the station, again he did the designs.

Bob Geier, former director of Union Station, said Bill was deeply involved in his community and saw his work as a way to build it up.

“Bill was always caring about the Ogden Community,” Bob wrote.  “He was active in the Red Cross, Weber County Heritage Foundation, Ogden Union Station Foundation and the  Imagine Ballet as well as others. He was always available to help a good cause!

“Bill’s office perched on the corner of Grant and 25th St. gave him some insight into  our community and he loved to share some of the stories at lunch usually at  Roosters or La Ferrovia about the humanity that flowed by.”

Bob said Bill was especially devoted to his daughter, Marissa, and his wife.

“He loved his wife Tammy and spoke about her caring for the children in the classes  that she taught.  Tammy taught special education and that takes a very special  educator to handle some of those challenges.

“Tammy and Bill worked together to make a great home for Marissa and affording her every opportunity they could. They have succeeded in raising a lovely young lady  together.

“Bill has his fingerprints all over the town, whether it was the Ogden City Public Works building or something as simple as a small home remodel.    He loved Ogden  and enjoyed the people.  I will miss seeing his light on in his office late at night as  he worked.  Bill had many friends in Ogden and he will be missed deeply both  professionally and as a friend.”

You can read his obituary here (click).  Several prominent families and officials have already left tributes to him, and I’m sure more will follow.

We at Union Station are very grateful for his many gifts and services to the station and the community over the years. We will miss him.

Ogden needs more folks like him.