William Eric Wehmeyer obituary photo
 
In Memory of

William Eric Wehmeyer

April 22, 1925 - May 22, 2017

Obituary


William "Bill" Eric Wehmeyer, 92, died Monday, May 22, 2017, at Abounding Grace Adult Family Home in Bellevue, Washington due to complications of Parkinson's Disease.

Bill was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on April 22, 1925 to parents Otto and Marie Wehmeyer. Two siblings, Paul and Margaret, welcomed him. Bill's parents spoke German in their home so he did not learn to speak English until he went to Kindergarten. He was proud of the fact that he could still speak and understand German until the day he died. In fact, sometimes he sang...

William "Bill" Eric Wehmeyer, 92, died Monday, May 22, 2017, at Abounding Grace Adult Family Home in Bellevue, Washington due to complications of Parkinson's Disease.

Bill was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on April 22, 1925 to parents Otto and Marie Wehmeyer. Two siblings, Paul and Margaret, welcomed him. Bill's parents spoke German in their home so he did not learn to speak English until he went to Kindergarten. He was proud of the fact that he could still speak and understand German until the day he died. In fact, sometimes he sang lovely German songs in his sleep.

When he was nine, the family moved to Port Orchard, Washington. Subsequently, they moved to West Seattle where his father owned and ran a small bakery. After several moves around the Seattle area, Bill graduated from Queen Ann High School in 1943.

Bill joined the Navy in 1944. He was stationed in Okinawa at a ship repair base as an electronics technician. Shortly after the war ended, Bill returned to Milwaukee to work for the telephone company. Missing his family, he soon moved back to Seattle where he was employed by Pacific Northwest Bell Telephone Company. He had a career with them for thirty seven years, until his retirement.

When he was twenty-three years old, Bill met Gerry (age 18) at a roller skating rink in Seattle. Shortly after they started dating, she contracted tuberculosis. Gerry spent the next three and a half years at Firland Sanatorium where Bill devotedly visited her. When she recovered, they married on June 14, 1952 in a small chapel on Firland grounds.

Bill and Gerry moved into a small house in north Seattle which Bill had purchased a year earlier anticipating Gerry's release. In 1954, they bought the home in Shoreline where they raised their two children, Linda and Steve.

Both Bill and Gerry were active in Prince of Peace Lutheran Church with Pastor Ole Nordsletton. Bill sang in the choir while Gerry was church secretary and wedding coordinator for many of the years they were members. Prince of Peace was the core of many wonderful memories for the whole family, spending times with friends and families of the church. The Albrecht, Nelson, Beail, Dayton and Thornton families spent many summers together camping, hiking and picnicking.

In 1978, Bill and Gerry moved to Sandy Hook on Whidbey Island where they lived for thirty years. They loved their neighbors and all the activities the beach community offered. An added bonus was sharing their days with their granddaughters, Sarah and Erica Bartlett, who moved to the neighborhood in 1991. Bill and Gerry thoroughly enjoyed their retirement, taking fifty-two cruises visiting places all around the world. Bill was the instigator of most of their trips, organizing and gathering friends to join them. He was in his element doing all the research and planning every detail.

Bill was fascinated with electronics and was ahead of his time, building a black and white Heath-Kit television in 1955, when most people did not yet own a television. He loved cats, motor scooters, singing, attending church, watching old classic movies and fishing (as long as the fish jumped in the boat for him). Bill told Ole and Frieda jokes complete with a delightful Norwegian accent. He prided himself in finding a good deal.throughout his life he scored many. Perhaps the best deal of his life was when he signed up for a lifetime subscription to Reader's Digest Magazine for a total of $25 at the beginning of WWII. It has come faithfully for 73 years with the last one arriving just a few days ago.

In 2008, Bill and Gerry moved off the island. After a few moves, they comfortably settled at an assisted living facility, The Garden Club, where they dined with new friends, participated in a variety of onsite activities and occasionally made trips to the casino for a day of fun. Living closer to granddaughters, Makenna and Alexa, allowed them to joyfully share their lives.

Bill was a wonderful husband and father. He was a kindhearted man and will be greatly missed.

He leaves behind his wife of almost 65 years, Geraldine "Gerry" Wehmeyer; his daughter, Linda Bartlett and her husband Brian; his son, Steve Wehmeyer and his wife Terri Ann; four grandchildren, Sarah Bartlett, Erica Bartlett, Alexa Wehmeyer and Makenna Wehmeyer and many nephews and nieces.



Arrangements entrusted to Bleitz Funeral Home, in partnership with Butterworth Funeral Home of Seattle, Washington.