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Welcome to the memorial page for

William E. Russell

January 1, 2018

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William E. "Bill" Russell 83 of Dubuque passed away Monday January 1, 2018 at Manor Care. 

Funeral services will be at 11:00 a.m. Saturday January 6, 2018 at First Congregational United Church of Christ with Rev. Lillian Daniels officiating. Military honors will take place at the church following services by the American Legion Post #6. Burial will be in Dubuque Memorial Gardens. Friends may call after 9:00 a.m. Saturday until the time of services at the church. Leonard Funeral Home & Crematory 2595 Rockdale Road is in charge of arrangements. 

Bill was born on May 23, 1934 in New York, New York, the son of Milo E. and Nellie (Burns) Russell. He graduated in 1951 from East High School in Waterloo, Iowa. He served in the US Navy from 1951 – 1971 as Senior Chief Petty Officer, during his time he served 4 tours of Vietnam. 

While serving in the Navy Bill’s mother introduced him through letters to Janet Potter. Bill and Jan wrote for seven to eight months and through those letters got to know each other very well. Jan and her two daughters who were 1 and 3 met and got close to Bill’s two sons who were 5 and 7, the four children became close before Jan and Bill met face to face. Through the letters Bill eventually asked Jan to marry him. They met on, August 22, 1966 at the Lemoore Naval Base in California and the next morning they were married by the Chaplain at the base. After 4 years of marriage they had their youngest daughter, making their family complete. Bill and Jan had 51 wonderful years of marriage together. 

His last cruise while in the Navy was aboard the Aircraft Carrier, USS America. The ship did a around the world tour and he was proud to retire with that memory. He was also able to be on the Honor Flight in 2013. 

After retiring from the Navy, Bill sold Snap-On-Tools, and later worked at Menards until 2010. He was a member of First Congregational United Church of Christ, American Legion Post #6 and the Fleet Reserve Association for 46 years. Bill enjoyed fishing, camping, and photography, but most of all spending time with his family. 

He is survived by his wife Janet “Jan” Russell; his children Timothy (Lynn) Russell, of Monument Beach, MA, Thomas Russell, of Dubuque, Kimberly (Scott) Klauer, of Dubuque, Brenda (Greg) Fuglsang, of Ankeny, Iowa, and Cheryl (Buck Jackoniski) Muntz, of Dubuque. Eleven grandchildren and seven great grandchildren and a sister Beverly Wildey, of Waterloo, Iowa. 

He was preceded in death by his parents; mother-in-law and father-in-law Leola and Hubert Potter; brothers-in-law Jerry Potter and Richard Wildey. 

In lieu of flowers a William Russell memorial fund will be established. 

The family wishes to thank the nurses and staff of Manor Care Health Services for all their wonderful care they gave to Bill.

 Service Information

January 6, 2018

9:00 AM to 11:00 AM
1st Congregational United Church of Christ

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