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William "Bill" Byrtus

April 17, 1922 December 28, 2014
William "Bill" Byrtus
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Obituary for William "Bill" Byrtus

Surrounded by his family, Bill Byrtus passed away at his home in Brookings on December 28, 2014. He was 92. Bill was born April 17, 1922 in Pueblo, Colo., one of five children to Paul and Veronica (Gresh) Byrtus. The family moved to El Monte, Calif. where Bill spent his formative years. Following high school, he enlisted in the US Army where he served honorably in General Patton’s 3rd Army, 80th Division. Bill earned the Purple Heart and two Bronze Stars for his service. Following discharge, he returned home to his wife, June, and began what would be an extensive career in the automotive industry in southern California. From owning his own dealerships, towing companies, scrap yards, to working as a purchasing agent for Bell Auto Works, Bill spent his entire working life in the car business. Bill loved to fish. Summers would find him at his second home in Brookings chasing Kings. He also traveled all over the world fishing. He loved to travel, especially in their RV. Bill also liked hunting and watching sports – he was one of the first season ticket holders when the Dodgers built their stadium at Chavez Ravine. He also owned season tickets at the Ontario Motor Speedway. In 1987, Bill and June moved permanently to Brookings. June preceded Bill in death in 1992. He was later introduced to Barbara Brodgen – the two hit it off and were married on March 5, 1994 in Brookings. Bill was known by his family to be a loving and devoted husband, father and grandfather and will be missed. Survivors include his wife, Barbara of Brookings; sons, Keith “Corky” Byrtus and his wife, Betts of Brookings, Ken Byrtus and his wife, Virginia of Brookings; step-daughter, Denise Priest, grandchildren, Brenda (Rod) Leveque, Laurie Panter, Glenn Byrtus, Wendy Byrtus, Jennifer (Jeff) Hood, Eric Byrtus, and Andrea (Brian) Knauss, fifteen great grandchildren and one great-great grandchild; sisters, Ruth Jones of Covina, Calif., Marie Grohs of Monrovia, Calif., Rhoda Cox of La Puente, Calif. In addition to his first wife, Bill was preceded in death by a son, William D. Byrtus and a sister, Bernice Hurns. Memorial contributions may be made to Coastal Home Health and Hospice, PO Box 493, Gold Beach, OR 97444 or to the Wounded Warriors Project, PO BOX 758517, Topeka, KS 66675. A funeral service will be held at 11:00am on Saturday, January 3, 2014 at First Baptist Community Church, 607 Pacific Ave. in Brookings. A luncheon will follow there. Private interment will be at WJ Ward Memorial Cemetery. Redwood Memorial Chapel is assisting the family. Condolences may be expressed online at www.redwoodmemorial.net.

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