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Bill Hatch



Bill Hatch passed away March 31, 2012 at age 79 in Vancouver, Wa.

Bill was born to William and Vivian Hatch in Sandwich, Illinois in 1932. He grew up in Waukegan and Gurnee, Illinois.

In high school Bill was a starter on the basketball team and held the District track record for the mile.

At age 17 he enrolled at the University of Illinois. After two years of study he was inducted into the Army and was deployed to Korea.

After his tour of duty he returned to Gurnee where he met Sue, his wife of 55 years. They married in 1956 and both returned to Michigan State University where they received their degrees, Bill’s BA was in Forestry.

After graduation, he accepted a job with U.S. Forest Service in Cle Elum, WA. Later he worked for St. Regis in Glenwood and Boise Cascade in Colville, WA. He was later promoted to Timberlands Manager for Boise Cascade in Goldendale ,. where they lived for 35 years.

Bill was very interested in children and making sure they received a good education so he served on the Goldendale School Board for 17 years. He also served on the Goldendale Country Club Board of Directors. He and son Mike took first place in the Member/Guest Golf Tournament that was held annually. He was a longtime member of Goldendale United Methodist Church.

His pride and joy were his son, Mike and daughter, Sandra. He attended all of their school activities and went to all of their sporting events. While they were attending Washington State University he and Sue went to their events and football games.

It was always interesting at the Hatch household. Mike and Sandra’s friends were always welcomed and enjoyed the homemade cookies, the pool table, table tennis, basketball hoop and many board games, as well as all of the recovering animals.

During his career he brought home and nursed many wild animals back to health including two great horned owls, a porcupine, and a fawn. He also brought home a black widow spider and a rattlesnake. He did this so Mike and Sandra could see and hear so they would have a respect for them and give them a wide path if encountered.

Over the years they had many cats and dogs, all rescue animals. Bill would probably say the most notable dogs were Rowdy, a black lab who took his guard duty status very seriously and went through the living room picture window after a man who wasn’t supposed to be there. And, Pele, a beloved German Shepherd who was a true and faithful companion who passed away two years ago at age 14.

In 1992 Bill was President of Pacific Logging Congress, an international professional association.. He was the first President to hold the conference in Hawaii and it was so successful the conference has been held there many times since. He had been a JC, also an Elks member and was involved in many Forestry organizations..

After his retirement he and Sue had a house built in Vancouver, so they could live closer to their children and grandchildren. They enjoyed discovering all of the many restaurants in the area. Many happy times were spent with Mike and his wife Kathleen, Sandra and enjoying the grandchildren, Christopher, Emily and Nicole and in the last year their great-grandson Owen.

Bill participated in the neighborhood Walk and Knock, Men’s luncheon group, dinner group, wine group and was part of the brewmeisters helping to brew and bottle beer. He enjoyed golfing and joined a weekly golf group, golfing various courses in the Portland/Vancouver area.

He was known for his great sense of humor and a willingness to help when needed. He was an animal lover; especially dogs and he and Sue supported Second Chance Companions, a dog and cat no kill rescue group as well as the National Humane Society.

During his struggle with cancer the family would bring their dogs to see Bill at Fort Vancouver Convalescent Center to visit Bill. Mike and Kathleen had him pick a name for their new puppy. He chose Kai Nani a Hawaiian name, because the family spent 23 winters in Hawaii and loved the land and culture. Sandra would bring Koa to give Bill kisses. He always kept a bag of treats for the many dogs that came to visit .

Bill was preceded in death by his father, William Hatch and mother Vivian Hatch.

He is survived by his wife Sue, son Mike, daughter-in-law Kathleen, daughter Sandra, grandchildren Christopher Hatch, Emily Hatch Lee and her husband Dylan and their son Owen, Nicole Hatch-Stearns, sister Nancy Brown, brother-in-law Fred and their sons Chris Brown and Steve Brown.

A Memorial Service will be held to celebrate Bill’s life at the Mill Plain United Methodist Church in Vancouver, WA. on Sunday April 15, 2012 at 2 p.m. There will be time during the service for anyone who would like to share their thoughts. If you are unable to join us but would like to share your thoughts at the service, please send them along.

Bill enjoyed life with great energy and a keen sense of humor. He loved his family and cherished his friends. He will be greatly missed.


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