Industry Veteran William Short Dies At 78

Oct. 30, 2013

Industry veteran William “Bill” Short of O’Fallon, Mo. died Thursday, Oct. 24, 2013 at the age of 78 after a long battle with a respiratory ailment. 

Short began his career with National Vendors in 1954 as a design engineer until 1978. After leaving National Vendors, Short and his late wife, Betty, started a full line vending company, Office Refreshment Service (ORS), in the St. Louis metropolitan area. ORS was in business for 22 years before selling to Sterling Service in 2000.

Short and his wife were avid industry supporters and active members of NAMA and the Mid America Automatic Merchandising Association (Missouri and Kansas). Short served on the MAMA board of governors for 27 years, even in retirement, from 1986 through 2013. He served three terms as association treasurer and three terms as president. The Shorts were instrumental in bringing the NAMA convention to St. Louis in 1994. Short was also part of the MAMA leadership that successfully passed three favorable sales tax bills in the Missouri legislature in the 1980s.

In his spare time, Short restored a 1966 Mustang and enjoyed making model airplanes and tending to his herb garden. But most of all, his proudest accomplishment was his family; he loved spending time with them, especially his grandchildren and great grandchildren.

Short is survived by his son and daughter-in-law, Don and Kim, two grandchildren, their spouses and four great-grandchildren. 

Memorials may be made to COPD Foundation or The Ghana Project at (a mission of Living Word United Methodist Church).