March 14, 2020 — William Joseph Houston, Jr., 82, passed away peacefully Monday, Feb. 24, 2020 at the age of 82 at the VA Community Living Center in Spokane, Wash.
He lost his battle with esophageal and brain can-cer. He was born in Providence, RI., to William and Catherine Houston.
Bill had two siblings, George and Catherine.
He attended St. Mary’s school in Providence and graduated in 1951.
Upon joining the Air Force, he demonstrated his gift for comedy by winning the Tops in Blue competition. He met and married Ann Sargent in the Air Force. They moved to Spokane, Wash., where they had their daughter, LouAnn.
After working some years as an Inhalation Therapist, Bill enrolled in Sacred Heart Nursing School. He graduated with his nursing degree in March of 1969 and, in 1971, he became certified as a Nurse Anesthetist.
In 1973, he married Patricia Ronan who had five children. They moved to Idaho and eventually settled in Florence, Ore. They had two children, Catherine and Bevin.
Bill loved barbershop music, joining the Spokane Pages of Harmony in 1957. Bill performed in the chorus and in several quartets. Always quick with a joke, pantomime or funny story, he delighted everyone he met.
He was a faithful member of St. Mary’s Parish in Florence and participated in the Knights of Columbus. He also enjoyed his involvement in Beginning Experience.
He was an avid fisherman and owned the phrase, “people love him…fish fear him.” After many wonderful years in Florence, Bill moved back to Spokane in August 2018.
He had great care from the staff at Emilie Court and at the VA Community Living Center.
Bill is survived by his sister Catherine (Richard) DeLuca of Providence, RI; daughters LouAnn Hommel of Spokane, Wash.; Catherine (Patrick) Jackson of Columbus, Ga., and Bevin Houston (Josh Linden-Levy) of Portland, Ore.; his step-children: Mark Ronan of Everett, Wash., Michelle (Chris) Church of Leavenworth, Wash., Monique (Don) Judkins of Orfino, ID; Colleen (Jeff) Geise of Central Point, Ore., and Christie (Dan) Schlesinger of Eugene, Ore.; 14 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.
There will be two services: a Mass and reception at Assumption Parish today, March 14, beginning at 11 a.m., 3624 W Indian Trail Rd. in Spokane, Wash. The service will be led by Father Tim Hays.
Another Mass and reception will be held Saturday, May 16, beginning at 11 a.m., at St. Marys Our Lady of the Dunes Catholic Church, 85060 S Highway 101 in Florence, Ore., led by Father Panneer Selvam.