William P. 'Bill' Barks was born July 7, 1925, in Klamath Falls, Ore. He passed away peacefully in his home with his daughter by his side on Aug. 25, 2014. Bill was the son of Clyde and Zena Barks of Tulelake. He grew up on his grandfather's homestead in Merrill, Ore., and moved to Tulelake when his father got his own homestead. Bill attended grade school and high school in Tulelake. He only had to attend three years of high school to get his diploma. World War II had begun and any person 17 or older could graduate a year early by enlisting in the service. He enlisted in the Navy in 1943 and was assigned to the Seabees. He was stationed in Kodiak and Attu, Alaska. He also served in Okinawa, where he ran heavy equipment, mostly building airstrips. After completing his tour of duty, Bill drew his homestead in Tulelake in December of 1946. Bill married Gladia Schermesser in July of 1947. They had three children: Charlotte, Clyde and Judy. Bill loved to farm; his favorite crop was potatoes, which he raised for 48 years. He still raised barley until 2008, when, after 63 years, he finally retired from farming. Bill loved his family very much and even though he was a hard worker and put in many long hours, he could always find the time to have fun with his wife and kids. He especially enjoyed his four grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. In later years, Bill and his wife spent time on the coast, hunting agates. Bill is survived by his sister, Maxine Grieser; daughter, Charlotte Barks; grandchildren, Nolan Killeen and Kimberly Barks; and great-grandchildren, Eric Barks and Teagan Killeen. He was preceded in death by his wife, Gladia; daughter, Judy Barks; son, Clyde Barks; and granddaughters, Allie Cross and Shawna Barks. In lieu of flowers, those wishing to do so may make a donation in Bill's name to the Klamath Animal Shelter, Large Animal Division, P.O. Box 482, Klamath Falls, OR 97603; or the Tulelake Volunteer Fire Department, Tulelake, CA, 96134. A graveside service for Bill will be at the Mt. Laki Cemetery on Cross Road at 10:30 a.m., Monday, Sept. 15, 2014. The family wishes to extend a special thanks to Marilyn Sharp for her dependable loving care and assistance with both Gladia and Bill as their health declined.
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Published in Herald And News on Sept. 5, 2014