Monday, December 22, 2014

William 'Bruce' Wortley

Running towards life, exceeding all expectations.

William “Bruce” Wortley, age 92, passed away on Monday, December 22, 2014, at Wheaton Franciscan – All Saints Medical Center.

Bruce was born in Eveleth, MN, on March 13, 1922, son of the late Russell B. and Hazel M. (Nee: Tobin) Wortley and had been a resident of Racine for 48 years. On August 26, 1950, he was united in marriage to Eileen Donna Koopman, who preceded him in death on April 18, 2000.

During World War II he proudly served in the United States Navy, fighting in the Pacific Theatre as a gunnery officer on the attack transport U.S.S. Marathon. After the war, he completed his college education graduating from Michigan State University in 1948 with a BS degree in Mechanical Engineering.

His career path led him to become an expert in the manufacture of electric motors and small appliances. Bruce managed the manufacturing operations for a number of firms throughout his career. Early employers included Marathon Electric and Hamilton Beach. He retired from Welch Electric in 1987. 

He was a long-standing member of the First Presbyterian Church and the Racine Curling Club. Bruce loved curling and played competitively until he was 89 years old. He also enjoyed golfing, fishing, hockey, gardening, working on his Chris-Craft, sailing, playing bridge, dancing and genealogy. There wasn't a soul who met him who wasn't attracted to his charm and personality. He was quick witted and always had a warm smile, a hug or a handshake to give. Bruce had a twinkle in his eye and a genuine concern for everyone he met. Most of all, he cherished time spent with his family. He will be dearly missed.

Survivors include his children, Russell B. (Katherine) Wortley of Kenosha, Pamela J. Wortley of Racine, and Diane E. (Mark) Chanlynn of Lyons, CO; three grandsons, Matthew Chanlynn, William B. Wortley II, and Ian Wortley; sisters-in-law, Jean Vander Molen of Union City, MI, and Cheryl Koopman of Newaygo, MI; nieces, nephews, other relatives and many dear friends. 

In addition to his parents and wife, he was preceded in death by his sister, Elizabeth (Ralph) Wandel.

Funeral services will be held Monday, December 29, 2014, at 11 a.m. at First Presbyterian Church, 716 College Ave., with Rev. Steve Fringer officiating. Interment will follow at Graceland Cemetery. Relatives and friends may meet with the family Monday at the church from 9:30 a.m. until time of service at 11:00 a.m. Memorials to the Health Care Network, American Heart Association or to one’s favorite charity have been suggested.

803 Main St., Racine, WI     (262) 634-7888

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