William Stevens Mancha passed away peacefully on Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2020, at the Christian Health Care Center of Lynden.
William was born in Mill Valley, California, on Jan. 5, 1932, one of six children of John Valentine and Mildred Eastland (Folker) Mancha. He grew up in Marin County, but spent his service duty in San Francisco as a flight instructor for the Navy. Back in civilian life and armed with a degree in mechanical engineering, Bill embarked on a career with the Ford Motor Company that took him to over 90 countries.
At that time he was married to Marie Turturici. In 1962 they and their two daughters, Susan and Sharon, moved to Athens, Greece, where he managed heavy truck sales in the Middle East and Africa. Six years later, he was transferred to England to oversee truck sales in the European countries. He met the love of his life, Thea Walker, who also worked for Ford, and they were married in 1972.
After moves to Michigan, back to the UK and then to Florida, Bill took a leave of absence to seek help from the renowned Seattle Pain Clinic. He was treated there for three weeks and diagnosed with severe spinal stenosis. He was advised to take early retirement.
For the rest of his life he dealt with his chronic pain with courage and patience. Whenever possible, he gave back to the community and he supported Thea in her volunteer efforts, which included giving various rescue dogs a very loving home. He spent the last year of his life at the Christian Health Care Center, where he received the most loving and compassionate care. Bill’s family will always be truly grateful to the dedicated nursing staff there.
Bill is survived by his devoted wife, Thea; daughters Susan Christie of Custer SD and Sharon Priem (Dan) of Kent WA; granddaughter Crystal Corbin-Zaas (Ken); two great-grandchildren, Ashlynn and Mason; nephews William and Howard Pickersgill and nieces Linda Windsor and Deborah Hockridge, all residing in California; and last but not least, his beloved dogs Lucy and Milly.
In accordance with his wishes, cremation services are being provided by the Neptune Society.
A Gathering of Friends will be arranged at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Whatcom Humane Society, or Christian Health Care Center.