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Jul 26, 1928 - Jan 1, 2017
Bill Crawford graduated into eternal life on the first day of 2017 in Modesto, CA at the age of 88.
He was born to Robert and Laura Crawford of Lead, SD on July 26, 1928. Bill graduated from Lead High School in the spring of 1946 and entered into the Army Air Corps in the fall of that same year. He proudly served his country for three years, stationed as a draftsman in Japan and the Philippines.
Upon his return from his service, he married his high school sweetheart, Joyce Haedt. A life-long lover of learning, Bill graduated from Black Hills Teacher College in 1953, after which he taught music in Lead, Nisland and Bowdle, SD. He graduated with a Masters in Education from Adams State College in 1956.
In 1955, Bill accepted the position of music teacher for Summerville Elementary and high school, and moved his young family to Tuolumne, CA. In his 39 years of teaching in Tuolumne, he taught music for 29 years, wood shop, auto shop, drafting, and continuation school in addition to numerous other subjects. Through his work as an educator he made countless lifelong friends in co-workers and students and they provided him with much laughter over the many memories they made together.
A man of many talents and interests, Bill enjoyed model airplanes, woodworking, bicycling, and dune buggies. Making dune buggies with students led to countless 'Ding Flings' and camping trips with the 'buggies in the Sierra's and across the nation -something the former Eagle Scout loved. Known by many as Mr. Crawford or Papa Bill, he will be greatly missed by those who knew him.
Bill was preceded in death by Joyce, his wife of 60 years, a brother and a sister. Left to cherish his memory are his brother Richard Crawford, Spearfish, SD; children Mike (Linda) Crawford, Modesto, Syd (Chris) Reyes, Salida, and Cristie Crawford, also of Modesto; two grandchildren Annie (Jacques) Daniel, Rapid City, SD and Bill (Lindsay) Reyes, Canyon, TX; and 7 greatgrandchildren.
Services will be 3 pm January 7, at Ripon Grace Brethren Church, Ripon with a reception to follow and graveside service at Carter's Cemetery, Tuolumne, 1 pm January 14 with a reception following at Tuolumne Community Baptist Church, Tuolumne. In lieu of flowers, please send remembrances to Ripon Grace Brethren Church or Gideon'sInternational.
Deegan Ripon Funeral Chapel
111 Palm Ave
Ripon, CA 95366
Published in the Modesto Bee on Jan. 4, 2017