Cover photo for COL William H. Bush's Obituary
COL William H. Bush Profile Photo
1926 COL 2020

COL William H. Bush

August 28, 1926 — December 29, 2020

William H. Bush, longtime sweet cherry grower will no longer work his cherry orchard, recalling smoke jumping days, flying over the typhoons in the South Pacific to pinpoint their location, firing ICB missiles at the test site, seeing the hydrogen bomb explode at the Pacific Site, or being Wing Commander of the missile base in South Dakota of 30,000 personnel at the Newark test lab.

Bill Passed away peacefully with his wife of 72 years, Clarice at their home in Florida on December 29th. They have two children Julia or carnation, WA and Daniel, deceased. He also has a grandson, Jeffrey, and two granddaughters, Monica and Andrea, and great granddaughter, Sophia.

Born August 28, 1926 in Ft. Wayne to George and Helen Bush, Bill had two brothers- Geb and Jack. He serves as an Aviation Cadet in the final days of WWII. Wanting to be a forest ranger he attended the University of Montana in 1947 on the GI Bill. While there he met his future wife, Clarice Swartz. The Korean War sent him back to the Air Force, a commission as 2nd Lt. and a career of 28 years including 2 commands as Colonel. The Air Force also put him through an intensive two year engineering course at the University of New Hampshire. He also had his Forestry degree.

Retiring in 1977, he returned to Bigfork, MT. He served on the Cherry Growers Board and helped build the plant on Findly Point, MT. The last 14 years he alternated living between Bigfork and his home in Florida where he passed away. Bill was a talented musician who sang in church choirs from the age of 10. Listening to music and keeping time to the beat was enjoyed to the end. He was a minister of the Bigfork Methodist Church for over 30 years. His devotion to his family and country was exemplary.

After a service in Florida, Bill flew home to Montana. Family and friends are invited to watch the committal service at 12:00 MST on Monday, January 11, 2021, by clicking the link below.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of COL William H. Bush, please visit our flower store.


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