Feb. 3, 1927 — Sept. 26, 2013
Bill was known as a very special person and loved by many.
He was born in 1927 to William and Pearl Smelcer. Most of his life was spent in Walla Walla except for two years in the Navy. On his way home on a bus he sat beside a pretty young woman and it was love at first sight. They were married a year later when Charlotte Nuckles became Mrs. William E. Smelcer. They were blessed with four wonderful children: Mike, Terry, Pam and Laurie. Terry and Laurie are the only ones surviving along with eight grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. The marriage spanned 63 years.
Bill worked in several businesses including a fork lift operator, carpet layer and floor covering and appliance repairman. He later purchased and owned an appliance repair company and a laundromat.
After retiring in 1985, he volunteered at St. Mary’s Hospital for 20 years and also at Goodwill. He was president of PTA at Washington School, Scout leader and worked with a church youth group and kids in a juvenile justice system. He was president of the Gem and Rock Club and enjoyed making jewelry out of his rock finding. Bill was an active wood artist and built beautiful wood furniture. He worked on several construction projects around the church, installed stained glass windows in the sanctuary and the cross on top of the church, he did work in the kitchen, youth room and the pastor’s office.
He was a devoted family man and provided for his family and enjoyed with them many recreational events, such as camping, fishing, rafting, arrowhead and rock hunting.
After Charlotte’s passing in 2010, he conducted a painting class at Garrison Creek Lodge and met a newcomer to the art world. In finding they had much in common and a desire to be together their hearts were joined in a comforting, enjoyable companionship of two years. Some of Bill’s friends came to Garrison Creek each Wednesday and the guys chatted over coffee. When Bill became ill, but still at home, a couple of days before his death, he was saying over and over the last of the Lord’s Prayer; “and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever and ever. Amen.” Bill was assured his home in heaven.
Memorial service will be at Christ Community Fellowship at 3170 Peppers Bridge Road, Walla Walla, with Pastor Matt Dotson officiating on Saturday, Oct. 5, 2013, at 2 p.m. Memorial contributions may be made to the Cancer Clinic or Christ Community Fellowship through Herring Funeral Home, 315 W. Alder, Walla Walla, WA, 99362.
The obituary was submitted by his wife, Nellie O’Connor.