In Memory of William BARTEE

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William BARTEE
William BARTEE William BARTEE William BARTEE William BARTEE William BARTEE William BARTEE William BARTEE William BARTEE William BARTEE

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Service Date:   August 16, 2013, 11:30 am

Date of Birth:   September 5, 1922

Date of Death:   July 14, 2013

Service Type:   Graveside

Life Legacy:
William H. Bartee As remembered by his daughter, Sandra Tracy William (Bill) Bartee was born on September 5th 1922 in Peebles Ohio to Beatrice Heid and Henry Bartee. He was the third of 6 siblings, who all predeceased him. As a child of the depression, times were very hard but Dad often spoke about the love of family and sharing between neighbors that made life seem manageable. As a young teen Dad went to live on a farm with his “Aunt Bess and Uncle Dutch”. He talked a lot about raising chickens, hogs, and growing fruit and vegetables. Dad and his brothers loved playing baseball and played with some local “boys” who went on to the big leagues. In 1942, at age 20, Dad and his brother Louis joined the Navy and were deployed into the Second World War. The war was hard on Dad and he rarely talked about the “war” part. He did talk about the countries he saw, the friends he made serving on ships and the experience of helping others. The story he told the most was of an assignment in London at 15 Grosvenor Square as the Naval attaché. One day, he was called to the basement of the building to meet someone, who turned out to be Franklin D. Roosevelt. Dad did not recognize him until he was introduced, as he had never seen a picture of him before. Dad served aboard the USS Ajax and in the Naval forces in France and Europe. He was awarded the following medals; World War II Victory, American Area Campaign, European-African Campaign and Good Conduct. During an assignment at Pier 91 in Seattle, Dad met his future wife Pearl Ellen Tessmer at a popular dance hall. Bill and Pearl were married on September 10, 1947 and lived the first year of their marriage and Dad’s last year in the Navy in San Diego, moving back to Seattle in 1948. They loved to dance, roller skate, play pinochle and spend time with family and friends. They were long time members of Zion Lutheran Church in Seattle. In 1952, a daughter, Sandra was born and in 1956 a son named Gary. During this time, Bill took his knowledge of agriculture to the local fruit and produce industry. He worked for Pioneer Fruit Company and other companies on old “produce row” now occupied by Safeco Field. Bill also lived in Fresno California for many years owning and operating a truck stop and doing fruit hauling on the side. On visits, dad would pack his old white Cadillac and drive to Seattle with tons of fruit. In 1996 Dad moved back to Seattle and lived with Gary and his family for a few years and then lived with Sandra and family. Due to failing health, he moved to the Washington State Veteran’s home in Port Orchard WA in 2008 where he lived until his passing. Dad enjoyed regular visits from family and was able to come home for holidays and special occasions. He could still play cards with us until recently. Even in declining health Dad kept up his careful routine, always on time to the dining hall, making sure he had a good haircut and shirt collar straightened. He made many friends at the Veteran’s home and was loved by the staff. He also made a point of sharing his faith and the hope he had in God. To the end Dad was really a “fruit and produce” man, even collecting and saving the apples and oranges off his meal tray and sending them home with us. Dad loved music especially Robert Goulet and Frank Sinatra and would often sing along to the radio. He loved the old songs in the Lutheran Hymnal. But Dad’s favorite song of all was “Somewhere over the Rainbow” which he sang to us often, sometimes serious and sometimes silly. Dad enjoyed hunting and fishing and passed this love onto his son and grandchildren. Dad enjoyed cooking and made the absolute best spaghetti sauce. He enjoyed working in the yard and loved colorful flowers. He had a penchant for big rocks and making rockeries. He loved baseball and we enjoyed his “analysis” of Mariner games and players. A favorite expression for those striking out: “Sit down you hamburger”. Dad was an amazingly kind hearted and generous person. He loved his children and grandchildren unconditionally. He took a special interest in all four of his grandkids and their pets and always kept up with their pursuits. Dad endured many hardships and losses in life, but remained hopeful and a man of prayer, knowing that one day he would meet the Lord and those who passed on before. Dad passed away peacefully, in his favorite chair on July 14, 2013. He is pre deceased by his wife Pearl, in 1967 and his son Gary in 2011 and survived by his daughter, Sandra (husband Dan) and grandchildren; Heather and Vince and grandchildren; William and Sheila (and their mother, Laura) and other family members. Thank you for your support of our family in this time of loss, and for celebrating a life well lived and an eternal homecoming.

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