William "Bill" McGahan, 83, died June 1, 2012, at Sky Lakes Medical Center in Klamath Falls.
Bill was born Oct. 30, 1928, at St. Charles Medical Center in Bend, Ore., to Lloyd and Catherine (Botz) McGahan. His mother died one month after his birth so he was shuffled back and forth from grandparents to aunts and uncles. He had some hard years as a child, but he grew up to be pretty responsible. He missed a few days of graduating at Bend High School in Bend so his dad said, "If you don't go to school, then you work." And work he did. He spent time working at Evans Fly Co. as a kid and then at Shevlin Hixon Mill, working on the green chain until the mill shut down.
He met and married the love of his life Wilma Jaques on June 26, 1949, a year before she graduated from Bend High School also. They spent one year in Prineville working for a mill and then he got a job back in Bend as a trucker for Bend Portland Truck, hauling freight. He was hauling diesel fuel for some time from Portland to Burns to Bend. In 1959, Bend Portland transferred him to Klamath Falls to manage the terminal there and he went back to driving and hauling everything there was. He stuck with the changes from Bend Portland, TransWestern and Systems 99 until they shut down a few days before he was to retire.
After retiring for a year, he went to work for Jim Migliaccio and Clough Oil hauling fuel until health issues forced him to retire. He loved to be out in the woods, cutting down trees and supplying everyone he could with wood. He was an avid hunter and loved to fish and camp out, barbecues, family, friends, and watching and being involved with his kids and grandkids in their sports and their lives. He also loved hiking up mountains and around lakes.
He and Wilma had their first child Kathy on Feb. 9, 1952, in Bend and their second son Mark on July 14, 1962, in Klamath Falls.
During all his years of being a trucker, from 1949 to 1990, he was awarded a huge trophy from the NAPL Safety Council for traveling 2,500,000-plus accident-free miles. He was always very proud of his job and very seldom missed a day.
He is survived by Wilma, his wife of almost 63 years; daughter and son-in-law Kathy and Tim Kennon; son and daughter-in-law Mark and Shawn McGahan; grandkids Chris and Trent McGahan; sister Frances Bushnell (90) of Prineville, Ore.; and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
At his request, there will be no services. All he wanted was a pizza party. There will just be a celebration of his life on Friday, June 15, 2012, at Mia & Pia's Pizzeria & Brewhouse between 5 and 7 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the Cancer Treatment Center and Sky Lakes Medical Center or a charity of your choice
Davenport's Chapel of the Good Shepherd is in charge of arrangements, 541-883-3458, 2680 Memorial Drive, Klamath Falls, OR 97601.
Published by Herald And News on Jun. 10, 2012.