Bill Farmer died on Jan. 9, 2022 at sunrise in the peaceful bliss of morning light in his Provincetown home. His sisters Gale, Mary, and Martha, and his companion Jack Hudson attended him with love.
“Being with you is like living in heaven,” Billy told them.
He was the second of nine children of Helen and William Farmer, born in 1953 in Syracuse, N.Y., and the first boy. He was the athletic, lovable big brother and guide star. Throughout his life, Billy remained close to both his extended Farmer family and the wide gay family circle he created in Provincetown and Boston.
“Love is in the air,” Billy sang, walking his dog, Brady, at Hatches Harbor.
Billy followed the muse of rhythm as he rummaged in the bins of Streetlight Records and Vinyl-Mania, where his collection of vinyl recordings began. His knowledge of ’70s and ’80s gay dance club and Motown music was extensive.
“The air of Provincetown is like no other place,” Billy also said. A 25-year resident, he found sacred spots in the beech forests, pond trails, and rocks at Long Point.
His friends were legion, from his successful brokerage career in Boston, founding his own real estate company, to his decades of business partnership with Jon Goode at Beachfront Realty, to his gay basketball team buddies, to all those who became his care team at the end: Jack Hudson, Jon Goode, Cary Raymond, Joe Castellana, Jim Seligman, Jamie O’Donnell, Jim Bracciale, Richard Kessler, Dawn Walsh, Jonathan Scott, Mike McGuill, Clarion Hesse, Paul Jones, Tommy Rogers, Tommy Hallahan, Guy Backlund, Tim Schirmang, and, of course, his golden retriever, Brady, who never once left Billy’s side.
Billy is survived by siblings Gale Testa, Mary Doyle, Martha Farmer, Michael Farmer, Timothy Farmer, Kathryn Mannino, and Brian Farmer, and by 17 nieces and nephews. “My family provided me with the quality of life, safety, love, support, and the best sendoff I could ever have imagined,” Billy said to Jack near the end.
He was predeceased by his sister Anne Momot.
A proud Gemini, Billy requested a celebration of his life be planned for his birthday at the beach near the Red Inn in the spring. Details will be available in the coming months.
He also requested that memorial donations go to the Lily House, P.O. Box 1818, Wellfleet 02667.