John “Bill” Wilmer Sperry passed away Friday, March 20, 2020, just two weeks after his 101st birthday. Bill was born on March 6, 1919, to William Van and Sadie Ann (Yotter) Sperry in Clover, Idaho.
Bill fought in WWII from 1942-1945. He was in the 4th Fighter Squadron, 52nd Fighter Group. He was the ordnance supply technician and camera repairman. He was involved in several battles and companies such as: Air Offensive Europe, Air combat Balkans, Rhineland, Tunisia, Sicily, Naples-Foggia, Rome-Arno, Southern France, North Apennines, PO Valley and Northern France.
Bill married the love of his life, Lillian Mae Snyder, on January 25, 1945. After the war, he became a farmer; milking, planting, harvesting, general farm chores along with some light trucking. Then Bill went to work for the State of Montana, as a ditch rider on the Daly Ditch. He retired from the Darby Ditch after 24 years.
Bill loved gardening and growing the biggest watermelons for the fair. In his spare time, he also enjoyed wood working and turning.
Bill was preceded in death by his parents, William Van and Sadie Ann Sperry; his wife, Lillian Mae Sperry; brothers, Paul, Orville, Milford, Eugene, and Glenn; and sister, Margaret.
He is survived by his children, Darrel (Carolyn Mitchel) Sperry, of Corvallis, Allen Dean Sperry, of Corvallis, Judith (David) Rickett, of China Springs, TX, and John William Sperry, of Corvallis; grandchildren, Kristi (Dale) Pliley, Shayne Sperry, Renee (Glenn) Bowman, Leo Noakes, Lisa (Eric) Shackelfor, Benjamin Rickett, and Tabitha Rickett; great-grandchildren, Duel (Reid), Tashenna (Andy), Tyrell (Marissa), Tenaya, Bridon, Bryce, Chance, Creston, Teneeka, Drianna, Shannon (Lane), Jasmine, Xavier, Abraham, and Rylan; great great-grandchildren Kaliesta, Tiegan, Chase, Kayden, Braylon, Malia, Hezekiah; and one great great great-grandson, Kole.
Visitation will be held from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. Friday at the Daly-Leach Chapel. A graveside service will be held Friday, March 27, 2020 at 3:30 p.m. in the Corvallis Cemetery. A celebration of life service will be announced at a later date. Donations may be made in Bill’s name to the Corvallis Community Church Building Fund, PO Box 222, Corvallis, MT 59828, or Veterans Monument Inc., PO Box 1391, Hamilton, MT 59840.
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