ARPD Park Director
Bill is another fine example of a kid who grew up in the Alameda park system and went on to give back to his community. Bill was an outstanding athlete in the park programs. He also captained a St. Joseph’s High School basketball squad that won the C.A.L. title and went on to play in the prestigious C.I.F. Tournament of Champions at the Oakland Coliseum.
While attending college, Leitz took the natural path of a dedicated park rat by joining the ranks of the ARPD park directors. In his time with the ARPD, Bill excelled at mentoring kids. He used his intelligence, razor sharp wit and commanding presence to connect with his park charges. For some he was a cool big brother with the big sideburns. For others he acted as a surrogate parent. For all he was the chief arbitrator, judge and jury. Woe to anyone who trangressed the written and unwritten laws of the park. Bill took kids to the movies and paid their way if they had no money. He introduced Bill’s Tales of Action and Adventure, an informal program during which he read the works of J.R.R. Tolkien to groups of kids who’s only interest in books up to that point was a scorebook. Bill and a fellow PD, Jim Curran, also created the Alameda TGWAR League. (If you want to know what that is buy the PlayBall! DVD)
Not surprisingly, after college Bill entered the police academy and began a successful career with the Alameda Police Department where he eventually retired as a captain. Bill married another former park rat, Maureen Johnson (Rittler), and raised a family on the Island.
Tours of Duty: Godfrey Park (1973), Krusi Park (1974)