Willard J. “Bill” Messner died on March 11, 2013 at his home in Hermiston at the age of 102.
He was born on Jan. 4, 1911 in Sanborn, N.D., to John and Mary Starke Messner. Bill was raised and attended college in North Dakota. He married Rose Cannon in 1933, and the couple remained in North Dakota where Bill farmed. In 1938, they moved to Portland and Bill joined John A. Roebling Company where he worked until retirement in1967. In 1975, Bill and Rose moved to Blake Ranch outside Heppner. They moved to Hermiston in 1996 and Rose passed away shortly thereafter. Bill married Dorothy “Dottie” Wells Mayes on Nov. 23, 1997. They have lived in Hermiston since. Bill was a member of the Grace Baptist Church in Hermiston. He enjoyed hunting, fishing, traveling, carpentry and playing cards.
He is survived by his wife, Dottie Messner, Hermiston; daughter, Darlene Grady and husband, Jim, Gresham; son, John Messner and wife, Judy, West Linn; stepsons, Steven Mayes, Nampa, Idaho and Les Mayes, Sandy, Utah; grandsons, John and Paul; stepgrandchildren, Jennifer, Erin, Laura, David and Leslie Anne; and seven stepgreat-grandchildren.
Bill was preceded in death by his first wife, Rose; his parents; six brothers and an infant sister.
A celebration of life service will be held on Monday, March 18, 2013 at 1 p.m., at the Grace Baptist Church in Hermiston.
Contributions in Bill’s memory may be made to the Vange John Memorial Hospice or the Grace Baptist Church.
Please sign the condolence book at burnsmortuaryhermiston.com.
Burns Mortuary of Hermiston is in care of arrangements.