William Lopez was born on July 31, 1955, in Sunset Park, Brooklyn to José and Maria Longina. In 1973, he graduated from John Jay High School. He also attended the College of Staten Island for two years.
A few years later, he took over the lion’s share in managing the family business, Hatillo Grocery. He ran the business for over 20 years, often working 16-hour days. William’s work at the store served the Park Slope community, where he touched many lives, kept many fed, and made so many close friends, including his best friend, Sal Lombardi.
He will be remembered for his coquito -- which made every party a hit -- his dancing, his deep love of Salsa music (particularly the Fania All-Stars, but specifically Héctor Lavoe and Willie Colón), his wild sense of humor -- which served him well throughout his many hospital visits -- and inappropriate jokes you couldn’t help but laugh at. William was also a father figure and brother to many, all of whom he loved, whether bound by blood, by faith, or by choice.
William is survived by Diana, his wife of 39 years. Their devotion and love was an inspiration to many. He is also survived by his son, Steven, his daughter, Kristina, his daughter-in-law, Claritza, his granddaughters, Samia and Raisa, his sister, Zoraida, and his brothers, Daniel and José.
The family would like to give a special thank you to the extended Mora-Lopez family, Bill and Josie Porfido, the Centeno family, Sal Lombardi, the Cruz/Cepin family, Dr. Kang, the John Jay College Human Resources staff, Mary Colón, Shirley Rodriguez, Kim Chandler, Yvonne Purdie, and Vivian Febus Cabrera. We would also like to thank anyone who visited, called, texted and checked in on William over the course of the last few years.
I'd like the memory of me to be a happy one, I'd like to leave an after glow of smiles when day is done. I'd like to leave an echo whispering softly down the ways, of happy times and laughing times and bright and sunny days. I'd like the tears of those who grieve, to dry before the sun of happy memories that I leave behind when day is done.