William J. Porter
William (Bill) J. Porter, 76, died peacefully on July 13, 2005, in the comfort of his home with his family at his side.
Bill was born on Feb. 22, 1929, in South Erwin, N.C., to Thomas and Mildred Porter. He later came to Idaho Springs in 1947 to work in the hard rock mines. In 1950, he married Gayle McFall, who preceded him in death in 1992. Together they had three children.
In 1950, Bill joined the Army and served tours in Korea and Japan as a lineman for the 40th Signal Company. He received an honorable discharge in 1952 as a corporal along with the United Nations Service Medal, a Korean Service Medal with one bronze service star, and a Army Occupation Medal (Japan).
In 1958 the family moved to Greeley, where Bill helped start Greeley’s first rescue squad as a firefighter and rescue diver. Bill’s role as a firefighter also included serving as the “bomb squad” for any found or reported explosives. He retired from the Greeley Fire Department in 1977 as a lieutenant. While living in Greeley, Bill also worked as a cabinetmaker and a carpenter and started his own fence business.
Bill lived in New Castle since 1979, where he was well known for his trapping, tile setting and carpentry work. He set traps to assist the Division of Wildlife and private parties. The Colorado Trappers Association honored Bill by naming him Trapper of the Year in 2003, a distinguished honor. Former U.S. Rep. Scott McInnis, R-Colo., also recognized and acknowledged that award.
In 1995, Bill married Karen Chapman, adding five more children and numerous grandchildren from a previous marriage to the family.
Bill was preceded in death by his first wife, and his son, Tom, in 1978. Survivors include children Bill (Debbie) Porter, and Linda Porter; grandsons Rick and Shane; and five great-grandchildren, as well as his step children, Kim (Tim) Tripp, Lauri Rickley, Kevin (Cathy) Rickley, Coni (Michael) Anthony, Charissa (Jorge) Cortez; and seven step-grandchildren.
Bill was greatly loved and will be dearly missed by all who were fortunate enough to know him.
There is a viewing from 5-8 p.m. Friday at the Appletree Community Room in New Castle. Memorial services are at 6 p.m. Saturday at Riverside Middle School in New Castle. Internment will follow at Highlands Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial contributions be made to the William J. Porter Memorial Fund, c/o Alpine Bank, 810 Castle Valley Blvd., New Castle, CO 81647.
Cochran Memorial Chapels has been entrusted with the funeral arrangements.
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