Sturm, Ruger & Co. is mourning the death of William B. Ruger Jr., former chairman of the board and chief executive officer of Ruger. The company’s second CEO and son of the company’s founder passed away this past weekend.
“We are deeply saddened by the passing of Bill, who was integral to the foundation and early success of this company,” said Chris Killoy, president and CEO of Ruger. “Bill’s 42 years of loyal service to the company has had a lasting impact that is still felt today. We will sincerely miss him and our thoughts and prayers are with his family.”
Bill joined Ruger in 1964 and worked in a variety of manufacturing and engineering positions within the company. In 1970, he became a member of the company’s Board of Directors. The following year, he was named vice president of manufacturing of the Southport Firearms Division. Just a few years later Bill was promoted to senior vice president of manufacturing and, in 1991, was named company president. He became vice chairman of the board and senior executive officer in 1995, and reassumed the duties of president and CEO in 1998. He became chairman and CEO upon William B. Ruger Sr.’s retirement in 2000. Bill officially retired from the Company in February of 2006.
BIll Ruger Jr. was born in Greensboro, N.C., in 1939. He graduated from Harvard College in 1961, where he studied engineering and applied physics. Before joining Ruger, Bill worked for the Kel Corporation of Belmont, Mass., as an electronics engineer.