Hundreds attend wake for Troy official stabbed to death

TROY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – A long line of mourners gathered in Troy on Monday to remember the city’s former director of operations.

Officials said Bill Chamberlain was walking his dog near his Wynantskill home when he was stabbed to death on Thursday. Hundreds gathered for his wake on Monday, and many said he deserves justice. They said he always kept Troy moving forward.

“The reality is he always had the answers,” Troy City Council President Rodney Wiltshire said. “He just knew how things were done.”

Wiltshire was among the many who came to pay their respects to Chamberlain’s family. Wiltshire said the 56-year old had a lot of plans for the city.

“He was actually going to start a pilot program this year to begin the municipal composting,” he said.

Gary Bristol, of Lansingburgh, was still in shock over Chamberlain’s death. Bristol was longtime friends with Chamberlain. He said they met at the Lansingburgh Boys Club decades ago.

“You know, when he walked in, he was one of your big brothers,” he said. “He looked out for you; took you on the trips. He was the counselor. Great guy.”

Brothers, Cole and Calvin Zapp, recalled playing sports with Chamberlain at Lansingburgh High School and their college days at Hudson Valley.

“About the most quick witted guy you’ll ever see,” Cole Zapp, of Troy, said. “I mean, he’s about as funny as they came. He just went out of his way for everybody.”

Police arrested 28-year-old Joseph Vandenburgh on a parole violation; however, they said he’s a suspect in Chamberlain’s death. Though many at the wake did not know who Vandenburgh was, they said they want him charged with murder.

“He’s too loved by this city not to have justice done,” Calvin Zapp said.

Police are still investigating the stabbing. Anyone with information regarding the incident is asked to contact police.

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