July 16, 1925 - September 13, 2021
Tacoma, Washington - Called by Death
It is with great sadness the family announces the passing of Bill Gerontis at the age of 96. Born "Vasili" Gerontis on 16 July 1925 in Tacoma, Washington; the son of Greek Immigrants from the Pontus and the Sea of Marmara. Bill Gerontis died 13 September 2021 in Tacoma, Washington.
He attended McKinley Elementary School, Gault Junior High School, and graduated from Lincoln High School in 1943. Prior to military service he worked in Tacoma for Hallis Brothers delivering produce. He joined the US Navy in 1943, serving during World War II and was honorably discharged in 1946. For a time, he worked for the Portland District Engineers marking trees for logging. He met Martha Jean Green on a blind date at the King Roller Rink on Pacific Avenue; they married on 21 June 1947 in Tacoma, Washington. Using the GI Bill, he earned a BA of Education at the California College of Arts & Crafts in San Francisco, California. Bill, Martha and their son Ricky returned to Tacoma in 1951. After 30 years, he retired from the Civil Service; having worked for the US Postal Service, Army Base Fort Lewis, Mc Chord AFB and the Bangor Naval Torpedo Station - all in the state of Washington.
Bill had numerous interests and possessed a unique set of natural mechanical/electrical and artistic talents. His recreational activities included drawing, photography, hunting, fishing, rock collecting, water sports, ping pong, electronics, and cribbage. He was a person who loved competition in all of its forms, had a great sense of humor and reveled in critical thinking and debate. Everything from religion, government, science, politics and life itself were fair game.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Damianos (Dan) Gerontidis and Kryiaki (Lillian) Vassiliou; and by all of his siblings: Parthenopi Gerontis, Cynthia Dolan-Harper, Johnny Gerontis and May Saucier. All his siblings and their spouses died in Tacoma, Washington.
Bill is survived by two children, his son Ricky Gerontis (Burien, WA.) and his daughter Lisa Kryza (Tacoma, WA.). Bill has three grandchildren, Sara Wyffels (Gilbert, AZ.), Adam Gerontis (Kent, WA.) and Laura Kryza (Tacoma, WA.}; and two great-grandchildren, Liam and Jonah Wyffels.
Bill was that unique human being built on a foundation of idealism, common sense and at the same time, the unexpected. He was intelligent, a problem solver, creative, competitive, always questioning, and a loving father. He was our compass and canary; he will be missed by his family and friends...Forever.
No service, no celebration, no donations, no flowers...that's right, it's just the way he wanted it.
Published by News Tribune (Tacoma) on Sep. 19, 2021.