William “Bill” L. Morris, 68, North Manchester, passed away at his home on Oct. 29, 2020. Bill was born in Dayton, Ohio, on March 12, 1952, to the late Victor and Vivian (Tannruether) Morris.
Bill graduated from Valley View High School in 1970 and Manchester College in 1975. During his younger years, Bill raced motocross. He met the love of his life, Debra Freshour, during spring break in 1973 while working at Peabody Seating Co. On Nov. 23, 1974, the two were wed.
During their 45 years together, they had eight children and fostered hundreds of others. Bill and Debra were foster parents for more than 25 years, giving their care, love and home to those who needed them. Bill was always willing to go the extra mile for his family. He was family-orientated, caring and humble. He taught his family the “R” word –responsibility – and believed that people should take ownership of their actions and if they said something, they should do it.
For many years Bill served the North Manchester community as a volunteer fireman. He was captain of Chester Fire Department and chief of North Manchester Fire Department. Helping those in need was something about which Bill was passionate. He was often the first one in a burning structure and the last one to leave the scene.
Bill was also instrumental in starting the Junior Firefighter Class for children wanting to be firefighters. After his adventures in firefighting, Bill worked in quality control for Precise Manufacturing, Fort Wayne, from 1989 to 2019 when he retired. On Sundays, Bill ran the audio and visual for many years at the North Manchester United Methodist Church, where he was a member. He was always thankful for all that he had and the opportunities he was given.
The loving memory of William “Bill” L. Morris will be forever cherished by his wife, Debra Morris, North Manchester; sons Jeff Morris, North Manchester, and Tyler (Stacey) Morris, North Vernon; daughters Wendy Schoettmer, North Manchester, Ethel (Steve) Baker, Warsaw, Nikki Morris, Shelbyville, Keisha (Chuck) Marley, Marion, Janie Morris, North Manchester, and Dawn (Doug) Macklin, Syracuse; sister Ann Gibbs, New Lebanon, Ohio; 12 grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.
Family and friends may call Tuesday, Nov. 3, from noon to 3 p.m. at McKee Mortuary, 1401 SR 114 West, North Manchester. The funeral service will begin at the conclusion of calling. The Rev. Steve Bahrt and Pastor Larry Ray will officiate. Burial will be at Oaklawn Cemetery, 600 Beckley St., North Manchester, at a later date.
For those wishing to honor the memory of Bill Morris, memorial contributions may be made to North Manchester United Methodist Church, 306 E. Second St., North Manchester, IN 46962, or the North Manchester Fire Department, 709 W. Main St., North Manchester, IN 46962.
The family has entrusted McKee Mortuary with final arrangements.