William O. Brown, The Dalles, passed away June 6, 2019 at home with family by his side. Bill, the oldest of five children, was born June 7, 1927 in Burlington, Wash., to Phyllis King Brown and Charley Brown.
During his late teens, he worked in the Yakima Valley as a truck driver and as a farm assistant, where he learned numerous techniques of animal care. He was also an avid auto mechanic, skilled and self-taught, from Bubblegum plugs to seltzer radiators and he shared this knowledge with anyone who asked.
In 1944, Bill was drafted into the Army. He served in WWII in Germany, in Korea and later in Japan, where he was hospitalized several months after being wounded. He was later stationed in Texas where he met and married Mary Eller in 1949. They lived in Texas and Louisiana while he worked in the oil fields, enjoying hunting, fishing and preparing many Southern and Cajun recipes they both enjoyed. They moved to The Dalles, Ore., in the mid-60s, where he worked at Harvey Aluminum/Martin-Marietta until he retired. They lived on a sheep and horse ranch, raising sheep and other farm animals until moving to town in 1975. In the late 60s, they became licensed foster parents, opening their hearts and home to hundreds of foster children over the years.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Mary; baby girl, Phyllis Ann; three brothers, Raymond, Jack and Leo; one sister, Pearl.
Bill lived the past eleven years with companion, Virginia and her daughter, Bonnie. He is survived by his five children: Virginia Lee, Tacoma, Wash.; MaryLee (Louis), The Dalles; Sharon (Kevin), Oakesdale, Wash.; Joel (Tauni), Payette, Idaho; and Earl, Nevada. Ten grandchildren: Mentoria, Bruce, Tammy, Ken, Dennis, Tyler, Zach, Danielle, Adam and Brennon; several great grandchildren, two great-great granddaughters and many nieces, nephews and cousins. He was much loved and will be greatly missed.
Graveside service was held at IOOF Three Mile Cemetery on June 14, 2019, with a celebration of life reception following at Spooky’s.