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BILL EAGLETON'S OBITUARY
Nov. 1, 2010Dear Friends and Family:
Here is the information regarding Bill Eagletonís funeral services. If anyone has any ideas for music or anything else, please let me know.
As you know, Bill was irreverent! He always found a way to turn everything into a good time. Letís try to celebrate his wonderful life. He was active to the end. He collapsed with a smile on his face, right after making a great play that helped win the softball tournament.
The truth is that I am very selfish. I canít stand that he is not here, but I donít have a choice, so I am trying very hard to remember the wonderful fifty years we had. Iím pretty sure heís up there in heaven teasing me in one way or another and that eventually he will find some way to make me laugh, as he always did!!!
Times and places:
∑Viewing --2 to 7 p.m.--December 1--Stratford Evans Funeral Home, 1490 B Street, Merced
∑Funeral --10 amóDecember 2--United Methodist Church, 899 Yosemite Park Way, Merced, CA
∑Receptionóimmediately following the funeral at United Methodist Church
∑Burialó2 pmóDecember 2óSan Joaquin Valley National Cemetery, Santa Nella, CA
The obituary will hopefully be in the Merced Sun Star and the Modesto Bee next Monday and Tuesday. Here is what I submitted to them. I am not sure it is what will end up in the paper.
Thank you for your thoughtfulness and all your many kindnesses.
Bill (William Franklin) Eagleton, born June 14, 1936 in Stilwell, Oklahoma, died unexpectedly but peacefully on November 17, 2010. He was known for his mischievous eyes and devilish sense of humor.
Bill is survived by his wife, Evelyn, to whom he was married for more than fifty years: their daughter, Elysa Eagleton Lanz; sons, Alan Todd Eagleton, David Eric Eagleton, William Brad Eagleton, son-in-law, Shanon Lanz; daughters-in-law, Kelly Eagleton, Yvonne Eagleton and Debra Eagleton. Perhaps he will be missed most by his grandchildren; Scott, Sean, Zachary, Eric, Jennifer, Haylee, Ethan, Avalon, Aubree, and Nick, as well as his surrogate grand-daughter, Ashlee Hunt and his exchange-student daughter, Satoko Nakahara.
Bill is also survived by his brother, Clifford Eagleton, sisters, Irene Scott and Wanda Ramondini; his aunt, Gladys Barrington, his brothers-in-law, Tom Daley, Don Daley, Jim Daley and Gary Zeismer; his sisters-in-law, Eva Eagleton, Lesley Daley, Sandra Daley and Anne Daley, and many nieces and nephews who also adored him. He was preceded in death by his parents, Nancy and Henry Eagleton, his brother Roy Eagleton and sister, Lorene Eagleton.
As a child, Bill moved to Patterson, California, and attended Patterson schools from second grade through high school, where he made many lifelong friends and met his wife, Evelyn. He was an accomplished athlete and played just about every sport in high school. His favorite sport was baseball. He always attributed his love of sports to two of his elementary school teachers.
While still in high school, Bill started working for the California Forestry Service and continued to work for them for a few months after graduation. He then joined the U.S. Navy and served for four years sailing throughout Asia. While in the Navy, he was recruited by the Hawaiian Naval baseball team, the Admirals, and played with them two seasons.
After leaving the U.S. Navy, Bill attended college in San Francisco where he and his wife worked for the Boy Scouts of America. After one year, he joined the Redwood City Police Department and worked as a police officer for six years, after which he joined the California Highway Patrol and served as a patrol officer in Los Banos until he retired in 1990.
After retiring, Bill drove tour bus for a few years and made many friends from all over the world. He then drove a school bus part time for a few years. The children called him Mr. B. He told them he was 89 years old (a lie). When it was hot, he kept a spray bottle of cool water on hand to spray the children as they stepped on the bus.
Through all the years, Bill continued to play baseball, gradually changing to fast-pitch softball, then slow-pitch softball. In October of this year, he competed for the 15th year in the Huntsman Senior World Games in St. George, Utah. He played third base with two teams, a 70 and over and a 75 and over. Both teams won gold medals, of which he was very proud. On the day he died, he was playing softball in a tournament in Las Vegas. His team won the championship and presented Billís family with their trophy.
Bill will be sorely missed by many. He was a man who loved life, his family and people. He truly made the world a better place.
In lieu of flowers, donations to Camp Green Meadows Outdoor School Foundation would be welcomed and appreciated. (Send to Merced County Office of Education, attention Debbie Gomes, 632 W 13th St. Merced, CA 95340)