William Macadoo Muse, Sr. "Bill" It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of William M. Muse, Sr. Known as Bill by his family and friends, Bill passed away peacefully in his sleep, with his wife by his side, on Wednesday, June 18, 2014, at the age of 93. Bill was born in New Orleans, Louisiana on June 26, 1920. He moved to Tacoma, Washington in 1932. He would eventually attend and graduate from Lincoln High School in 1941. Bill lived an incredible life. He was a Golden Gloves championship boxer. His high school education was interrupted by his service in the Civilian Conservation Corps at Mount Rainier. He was also a Navy Reservist during this time. He would ultimately serve in the United States Navy for five years. Like his father, who was a World War I veteran, Bill helped to safeguard his country during time of war in World War II. Following in his footsteps, Bill's son and grandson would also protect their country's interests in the Vietnam War and Persian Gulf War, respectively. After the war, Bill enrolled in Pacific Lutheran College (PLU) and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts and Science degree. His thirst for education did not end. He enrolled in the University of Puget Sound and earned his Bachelors in Education degree, and earned his Masters of Science degree from The Oregon State University. In 1957 Bill applied his formal education to his chosen career field. He became a well-loved and respected educator in the Tacoma Public School District and Tacoma Community College. He retired from education in 1983. The racial climate in our country created obstacles for Bill in his early life, but he would not be deterred. Bill celebrated diversity and championed civil rights. He was the president of the Tacoma chapter of the NAACP. He was the advisor of Tacoma Community College Black Student Union and was able to bring high-profile celebrities, such as social-satirist, Dick Gregory, and World Heavyweight Championship Boxer, Muhammad Ali to Tacoma to support the fight for equality for all. Bill was also a member of the Fraternal Order of Eagles and the Gig Harbor chapter of Benevolent Protective Order of Elks. Bill was elected to the position of Exalted Ruler of the Gig Harbor Elks in 1993. He was the first African-American to hold that position in the Elks organization in Washington State. Listing all of his interests and hobbies is no small feat. If one were to ask which organizations he belonged to, the answer would be "All of them." To those who knew and loved Bill, he will always be remembered for his love of teaching, jazz, skiing, boating, dancing, and his family. Bill was preceded in death by his parents, Hillery and Alice Muse, brother Royal Muse, and son William M. Muse, Jr. He is survived by his wife of sixty-one years, Reitha Muse, daughter-in-law Elizabeth Lamar, his grandson, William M. Muse, III, granddaughter-in-law, Beritt Muse, two great-grandchildren, sister-in-law Roxie, niece Kristy and her husband Ed, nephew Gus and his wife Evelyn, and a loving host of relatives and friends. Bill was laid to rest by his family at Haven of Rest funeral home on what would have been his 94th birthday. Remembrances can be made in his name to any veterans' or children's, non-profit, charity.
Haven Of Rest Funeral Home Cemetery & Crematory
8503 Hwy 16 W Gig Harbor, WA 98335
Published in News Tribune (Tacoma) on June 29, 2014