William E. Baas passed away on August 24, 2019 at 86 years old. A celebration of life will be Saturday, October 19th, with an open house from 12-5 and services at 2:00 at Cheryl’s home, 507 Laramie, Alliance, NE. Bill, also known as Dad, Will Ed, Willie or Billy, loved sea food, lemon meringue pie, sweet tea, flying airplanes, watching football and golf, a road trip to the casino and most of all, knowing his family was taken care of. His most satisfying thought would be to know that his work was complete and his family would be ok. On any given day, including the days that immediately proceeded his death, Bill could be found flying RC planes or his drone with his fly buddies or completing the list of honey-dos that made his life complete and meaningful. Just two days before his heart failed, he fixed his daughters car and mowed the lawn.
Bill was born on the 28th day of April, 1933, in Frisco City, Alabama, to Luther Carl and Verona (Riley) Baas. He was the oldest of four children and only son. He graduated high school and went on to play one year of college football. His love of football and golf continued throughout his life. He shared this love with his oldest son. Following college, he had many jobs until he began with a company doing some pipe fitting. He then moved to Scottsbluff, Nebraska to get his plumbers certification. He worked with a company to build the High-Rise dorm at Chadron State College. This is about the time that he met Cheryl who he lovingly called Virginia, her middle name. They were married and began traveling with Bill’s work as an instrumentation supervisor in the construction field. Bill and Cheryl were blessed with four children. Bill’s occupation would take him and his family all over the world for work for most of his adult life. They traveled the U.S., Puerto Rico, Iran, Indonesia, Thailand, and the Philippines. Bill loved to travel and he learned many languages over the years.
Bill had a love for flying from a young age and got his pilot’s license in the mid-sixties. Memories of flying with Dad are cherished. After he was no longer flying air crafts, he began building and flying remote-controlled airplanes and drones. He was well known for being involved in the Alliance RC club and had annual fly-ins with his friends.
The past 15 years were spent in Alliance, Nebraska. Bill was a member of the Masons and the Shriners, something he also shared with his oldest son. He and his oldest son lived together and loved to watch football together. If you knew him, you know that his favorite team was the team that was winning! Not a moment was wasted with Bill. He mowed people’s lawns. He was the handyman for all things broken. He tasted all of the holiday meals for Mom and spent time with his family and friends. If that wasn’t enough, Bill attended church regularly and enjoyed spreading the word of God. He also enjoyed riding his bike to stay active. Bill enjoyed these things up until he went into the arms of Jesus.
Bill will be missed most for his hugs. Bill would greet everyone with a hug! He didn’t speak about all of his feelings out loud but we all knew how much he loved us and cared about us. His hugs, goofy sense of humor, knowledge of mechanics, never-ending energy and unwavering gratitude for the “small details” of life will be forever missed as well.
Greeting him in heaven are his parents, Luther Carl Baas and Verona Riley Baas, his younger sisters; Mary Lloyd Baas, Margret Johnson, and Sara Smith, his niece, Regina Smith, his grandparents; Burney and Zebra Baas, his brother’s in law; Donald Hobbs and Vern Fitzgerald, his mother-in-law Wyoma Hobbs, his father-in-law Kenneth Hobbs.
Bill is survived by his ex-wife and friend Cheryl Baas, his four children; Christopher Baas, Joseph Baas(Jeanie Baas), Debi Baas, Michelle Herrmann (Matthew Herrmann), his six grandchildren; Cierra Herrmann, Colton Berndt, Levi Berndt, Savannah Baas, Parker Baas, and Nevaeh Herrmann, his seven nieces and four nephews, and many great-nieces and nephews.