Photograph by Martha Deed
John M. Montstream (l) eating lunch with Bill Clicquennoi during Michael Northrup's third trial for the murder of John F. Montstream, Buffalo, NY, November 5, 2001.
Bill was elementary school principal for Johnny and Jim Montstream. He frequently ate dinner with the Montstreams between the end of the school day and evening meetings of the Re-Design Project that both John, Sr. and Bill attended.
"I had two little guys at home with red hair. It was a real tie. Our kids were the same distance apart and musical."
After Johnny was murdered, Bill welcomed John and Annette's children to school in Greece.
"Whatever tragedy happened, I was on the front line. If someone's mother died, or a baby died, I was there to give the eulogy and to be supportive.
"To me, John and Marion were an elevated couple. John is very learned, has the voice of reason. He is always under control, and he brings a reasonable approach to dealing with conflict. He can process, can get angry, and not rip himself apart.
"Marion is feisty. As a substitute teacher, she could come in and rescue any situation. She never had problems with discipline. She can manage lesson plans, and never has to raise her voice. If she gave you the twitch of her brow, you would know not to mess."
"Death isn't a thing to me anymore. It happens."
He retired as a school administrator at age 56.