William “Bill” DeLisle


A Celebration of Life for 91-year old William “Bill” DeLisle of Indiana, a Sandhills native and longtime rancher and teacher, will be held Thursday, Oct. 28, 2021 at 11:30 ET at Maple Grove Church of God, 2729 E. 38th St., Anderson, Ind. 

Visitation precedes the celebration of life at 10:00, also at Maple Grove Church of God in Anderson.

In lieu of flowers, please donate to Bethlehem Farms, Lavender and Praise Bees Apiary at Maple Grove Church of God.

Online condolences may be left at obituaries.heraldbulletin.com

Bill DeLisle was born Feb. 26, 1930, to Mary Long DeLisle and Estash “Earl” DeLisle in Portageville, Missouri. He passed away Saturday Oct. 23, 2021. 

In 1944, when Bill was 15, he moved with his mother to Bingham, NE, joining stepfather Herb McCarty on a cattle ranch that became the “McCarty DeLisle Ranch.”

Bill did indeed walk two miles to the Bingham school. He left Alliance High School before graduating to join the Navy at 17. Bill was a veteran of the Korean War and served as a flight engineer on PBM Mariner Flying Boats doing antisubmarine patrols in the Pacific.

After the Navy, Bill attended Anderson College in Anderson, Ind, where he met Lora Kathleen Smith. Kathy and Bill were married on Sept. 1, 1955, and this year marked 66 years of marriage.

They both earned teaching degrees from the University of Nebraska. Bill and Kathy both enjoyed a passion for reading, learning and serving. 

They taught in McCook, NE, and in Chicago before moving to Kenya in east Africa about 1960. There on a fellowship with Columbia University and Church of God missions, they set up and taught at secondary school for the newly independent Kenyan government.

In 1966, they returned to the family ranch near Bingham and Bill went back to school, receiving a certificate of cattle veterinarian medicine from the University of Colorado.

He also earned his private pilot license and later received instrument, multi-engine, and charter certifications. He owned several planes over the years including his World War II Stinson L5E Army Ambulance plane. He was a member of Warbirds of America and Nebraska Civil Air Patrol.

Bill returned to school again in the 1980s and earned a master’s degree in education from Chadron State College in 1985. He went on to become a high school principal in two Nebraska towns, Clarks and Yutan.

Retirement couldn’t slow him down. Bill was a substitute teacher in Hyannis, NE, a pastor for the Hyannis and Ashby United Church of Christ, and later worked part-time in Eaton, Ind, at a local farm until he was 85. 

Bill remained active as a greeter at Eaton Church of God, Glad Tidings Assembly of God, and most recently Maple Grove Church of God.

He enjoyed helping his neighbors, planning trips, travel, telling stories and reading. He visited every continent except Australia and Antarctica. 

He raced flat track motorcycles for Harley-Davidson, hunted big game in Africa and was a cowboy. He flew planes, sailed ships, scuba dived, snow skied, and lived a good life. He donated his body to the Indiana University School of Medicine.

Bill is survived by his wife, Kathy DeLisle; son Steve DeLisle (Tina); grandchildren Seth Plummer, Ben DeLisle (fiancé Jordan Johnson), Claire Plummer and Kelly DeLisle; step-grandchildren Cameron LaPorte and Allie LaPorte (Vince Cheng); many cousins, friends and neighbors.

He was preceded in death by his parents and his daughter, Joy DeLisle Plummer.

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