Obituary: William Gramitt (1937-2024)

William Gramitt, 87, of Newport, Rhode Island, passed away on June 11, 2024, at HopeHealth Hulitar Hospice Center, in Providence.

Born in New Britain, CT, he was the son of the late Otto H. and Eleanor L. (McGrath) Gramitt. He is survived by: his sons Matthew (Leah) Gramitt of Barrington, R.I., Jason (Devin) Gramitt of Portsmouth, R.I., and Jeffrey Brunell (Paula) of Havre de Grace MD; grandchildren: Taschen, Aaniin, Iry, Noah, Miles, Jules, Audrey, and Trevor; siblings: Thomas Gramitt of FL, and Eleanor Lucitti of SC; and nieces and nephews: Kim, Kelly, Thomas, Robert, Jo-Ann, Monica, and Jennifer; his good friends RJ Von See and Burt Jagolinzer, who stuck with him through the years… …and the many formal and common-law ex wives, girlfriends, and lovers who had the unique experience of having gotten close to him.

He was predeceased by his brother, Robert Gramitt.

William attended New Britain High School in New Britain, CT before joining the U.S. Marines where he served in Operation Blue Bat during the 1958 Lebanon Crisis, earning the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal. After serving his country, he made his way to California where he started a family. A few years later he moved from Los Angeles to San Francisco and became a “Flower Child”, attending the first love-ins, be-ins, and spending time around those involved in the hippy movement. He later traveled back to New England, living in vans and having adventures, until in the early 1970’s he started and owned one of the largest custom van window installation companies in the northeast – William’s Windows, in Lynn, Massachusetts. He became a follower of the readings of famed psychic Edgar Cayce, and embarked on more than one adventure in search of gold and the fountain of youth, as described in the Cayce readings. In the early 1980s William pivoted into Real Estate, moving to Newport, Rhode Island where he and his then partner Willove Gramitt opened the real estate brokerage firm, Beetle & Beetle Associates. In the years preceding his last residency in the Rhode Island Veterans Home, William could be found driving taxis and shuttle buses to the airport, regaling his passengers with stories from his wild, unorthodox life. He especially loved the holiday season where for many years he could be seen everywhere in a Santa hat, complimenting his white hair and beard, giving small gifts to the many people he came in contact with.

There will be a private burial. A celebration of William’s unique life will be held at a future date. In lieu of flowers, please send your good vibes and positive thoughts to the spirit of “living in the now”, which as anyone who knew William well can attest, was his life’s guiding principle.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of William Gramitt, please visit Memorial Funeral Home’s floral store.




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