William Merle (Bill) Honaker was called home to join his Lord. He is survived by: his wife, Mary Louise (Triplett) Honaker,his children, Doug Honaker, Conni Bellinger (John), Cris Lopez and Brian Honaker; six grandchildren, Jake Bellinger, Josh Bellinger, Sarah Bonillas (Anthony), Daniel Lopez, Brianna Honaker and Mary Ashley Honaker: two great-grandchildren, Preston Bellinger and Ambria Bonillas. Bill also has many nieces and nephews and great, great-great and great-great-great nieces and nephews and cousins. He was preceded in death: by his father, William Elmer Honaker, his mother, Ethel Mae (Lupton) Honaker: a still born sister, a brother, Charles Honaker (Rosie), a sister, Ellen Osborne (Jim), a brother, John Honaker, a sister Mildred May (Oscar) and sister Ethel Mae Lehman (Gene).
Bill was born in Marion, Ohio, on January 9, 1924, as Merle Junior Honaker. He attended Mark Street Elementary, Central Junior High and Marion Harding High School. In first grade, there were seven Juniors in his class, so his teacher started calling him Bill, because she knew his dad, Bill Honaker. So from that point to the outside world he was Bill and to his family he was Junior. One of his first jobs was at “Ralph’s Snappy Service”.
Bill joined the Army Air Corp in 1943, He was stationed in Chicago, Sioux Falls and Madison. While in Madison, he wanted to enter pilot school. To enter a more thorough investigation of his back ground was needed. An immediate question came up about his name, it was even more compounded because he had a German surname. His mother had to legally change his name back in Marion, before he could enter the school. He was discharged from the military in 1946 and returned to Marion. After a short time, he could not find the job he wanted so he went back in the military from 1946 through 1949. He was stationed in many places including, the Azores, Iwo Jima and China.
After the military, he returned to Ohio and worked for the Erie Railroad in Sandusky, Ohio, for the summer. He and his wife, Mary Lou, were married there on September 22, 1950. They returned to Marion and started their family.
The Marion Depot, was his next job. Bill started as a guard and worked his way up through the ranks. Radioactive materials were his specialty when the Marion Depot was closed and moved to Shelby, Ohio in 1962. The family lived in Shiloh, Ohio. When his area was closed in Shelby, Bill was transferred to the Defense Construction Supply Center in Columbus, Ohio. The family lived in Whitehall, Ohio.
Education was always important to Bill. He had dropped out of school in his senior year. One of his goals was to graduate from school before his oldest child, so when the oldest child was a sophomore, Bill became a night student at Whitehall –Yearling High School. Bill was taking a class at night with the same teacher his child had during the day. The class credit was transferred to his high school and Bill became A 1967 graduate of Marion Harding High School.
Retirement came in 1979 and Bill and his remaining family joined the other three children in Arizona. Sun City was a perfect fit for Bill with the Bowling and Softball Leagues. His remaining time was filled with family activities with the addition of grandchildren and great grandchildren. Also his sister Ethel Mae and her family had moved to Arizona 18 years before.
Bill continued contact with his childhood friend, Richard Haycox, until his friend passed away a short time ago.
Bill was cared for in his home by his son Brian and his fiancé Carrie Forney who lived with them. The other children and grandchildren were also members of the care team. Mary Lou Honaker, Bill’s wife of 67 years has lost a true soulmate. Bill will be missed by all who ever knew him.
His services will be at the Menke Funeral Home 12420 N. 103rd Ave., Sun City, AZ 85351, Wednesday, July 19, 2017. Viewing – 9:00 – 9:30 am Services and Celebration of Life – 9:30- 11:00 am Social and Food – 11:00-12:00 pm National Memorial Cemetery of Arizona 23029 Cave Creek Rd, Phoenix, AZ 85024 Burial with military honors – 12:30 pmPrint Obituary & Condolences