William Henry Bayless, 83, passed away at Parkhurst House in Hood River, Ore., on Feb. 16, 2012. Bill was born on Oct. 1, 1928, in El Centro, Calif., the son of Mary Turner Bayless and Henry Roberts Bayless.
Days following his birth, the family returned to their home and family homestead in Tempe, Ariz., where Bill was raised until 1945 at which time they moved to Hood River, Ore.
In the Hood River Valley, Bill attended the Odell High School for one year while his parents taught school. His father taught school at Odell High School and his mother taught at Odell Grade School during the academic year of 1945-1946. Following one year at Odell Bill and his parents moved to Creswell, Ore., where he met Lavon Denney, whom he married in 1948.
During the subsequent years, Bill worked on heavy construction projects such as the Detroit Dam, Rocky Reach Dam, Priest Rapids Dam, The Dalles Dam and Wanapum Dam. Returning to the Hood River Valley in 1963, he continued to working construction and owned and operated Columbia Cabinet Center.
For years, Bill was active in the Hood River Masonic Lodge and the Idlewilde Cemetery Board, and was a contributor to many causes, both local and national.
Bill is preceded in death by Lavon Bayless, his spouse of 60 years.
He is survived by his daughter, Della Stagner, and her husband, Jack, of Longview, Wash., and his son, William Henry Bayless, of Hood River. He also will be missed by seven grandchildren: Mike Stagner and his wife, April, of Wenatchee, Wash., Kurt Stagner and his wife, Jessica, of Auburn, Wash., Marla Johanneson and her husband, Steve, of Bellingham, Wash., Franklin Bayless and his wife, Ofelia, of Chula Vista, Calif., William Bayless, of Lincoln, England, Karen (Bayless) Martinez and her husband, Edgar, of Bangkok, Thailand, and Heather (Bayless) Fletcher and her husband, T.J., of Suisun City, Calif. Also surviving are 11 great-grandchildren and many friends.
The family wishes to acknowledge the many great friendships he had at Parkhurst House as well as the staff of Providence Hood River Memorial Hospital for making his final path easier. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him.
Remembrances may be made to the Shriners in The Dalles, Ore., and also to the Parkhurst House staff, Hood River chapter.
A celebration of life for Bill will be held at Anderson's Tribute Center Saturday, Feb. 25, at 2 p.m. Arrangements under the direction of Anderson's Tribute Center (Funerals, Receptions, Cremations), 1401 Belmont Ave., Hood River, OR 97031; 541-386-1000. Please visit www.andersonstributecenter.com to leave a note of condolence for family.
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