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Colleagues Mourn William Brinker III


William Brinker III passed away Jan. 25. 2004. He was 59.
After serving in Vietnam as a Marine Corps medic, Mr. Brinker became a major figure in the fluorescent pigment and ink industry, beginning with DayGlo in 1969 and then joining Radiant Color in 1991 as its litho inks chemist. He retired from Radiant Color in 2001.
“I was very sorry to learn of Bill’s passing,” said Robert Hess, vice president of Radiant Color. “We worked and socialized together for many years. He helped Radiant in general and me in particular over the years with work he did in the ink area. He was particularly influential with Hallmark and the companies who made ink for Hallmark. Hallmark is a very demanding company when it comes to the quality of ink they expect to be printed on their cards. Bill was always able to help the ink companies meet and exceed Hallmarks expectations. To this day one of Hallmark’s standard colors for greeting cards is one he prepared many years ago. While the business has moved from one ink company to another and one fluorescent company to another the fluorescent company, the color standard remains the same today and is critical to Hallmark’s printing process.
“Just recently I was sending a notice to our salesman about a successful run of a new series of strong colors,” Mr. Hess said. “If you look at the cover of the new Star magazine, it uses an ink made with Radiant Color. While Bill wasn’t here to finalize our formula for this series, he did begin the work that put us on a path to make this type product in the first place. He has and will be missed.”
Quite a few of Mr. Brinker’s colleagues worked with him at both DayGlo and Radiant Color, and they recalled his leadership in the field.
“Bill was my technical man, and we worked very closely together,” said Larry Krusewski. “He was involved in many major accounts, including American Greetings and Hallmark, and he was instrumental in our successes in the greeting card field.”
“Bill was a great guy for technical service on inks,” added Jim Cook. “He was very hands-on at both press side and formulation, He did a lot of work for American Greetings and Hallmark, and he developed specialty colors such as Pink 66 that became standards in the industry.”
Ray Peria, an ink chemist at Radiant Color, worked with Mr. Brinker during his last few years at Radiant Color. “Bill was a very good guy and a very hard worker,” Mr. Peria said. “He was very knowledgeable, and was a mentor to me.”
Mr. Brinker is survived by his children, Steven and Mylisa, and two grandchildren. His wife, Bonnie, predeceased him.