Former Springfield mayor, Bill Sullivan, passes away

Hampden County

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Mayor Domenic Sarno has issued a statement Wednesday night after learning about the passing of former Springfield Mayor, Bill Sullivan. 

Sullivan was mayor of the City of Springfield from 1973 until 1977. 

In his statement, the current Springfield mayor said Sullivan loved the city and was the driving force to promote not only neighborhoods but also downtown and tourism, especially at the Basketball Hall of Fame.  

Sarno referred to Sullivan as a good friend and said he, “enjoyed his visits and wisdom when he came by to see me at City Hall or when I had a chance to see him at the Holyoke Soldiers’ Home.” 

Sullivan was a veteran and resident of the Holyoke Soldiers’ Home, a facility that was hit hard with COVID-19 infections and deaths.  

His cause of death is currently unknown. 

You can read Mayor Domenic Sarno’s full statement below: 

“I was very sorry to hear of the passing of former Mayor Billy Sullivan.  He was a resident of the Holyoke Soldiers’ Home; he was a man of family, faith, and community.  He loved the City of Springfield and was the driving force to promote not only our neighborhoods but also downtown and tourism, especially the Basketball Hall of Fame. 

He was a good friend and I enjoyed his visits and wisdom when he came by to see me at City Hall or when I had a chance to see him at the Holyoke Soldiers’ Home.  He always told me that being mayor can be a difficult job because you can’t make everyone happy and that you are going to get ‘beat up at times’ and that no matter if you were mayor in 1852 or now, you have to have passion and a love of our City and all its people.  Because if you don’t then it’s time to leave the keys on the desk and walk out that door. 

Thank God, Mayor Sullivan always had that passion and I am grateful that that passion is still in my head, heart, and gut for our City of Springfield.  I’ve never forgotten that sage advice he gave me.  My sympathy, thoughts, and prayers to his family and friends.  May God rest his soul for a life well live.” 

Domenic Sarno, Mayor of the City of Springfield

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