William John Rouse was born August 2, 1935 in Portland, Oregon to John and Dorothy Rouse. Bill attended Benson High School. He met his future wife, Marjie at a church youth group in Roseburg, Oregon while they were in high school. In 1953, at the age of 18, Bill joined the Navy. A couple of years later both of their mothers met “by chance” in Portland while shopping and Dorothy told Ruth that she thought it would be a good idea for Marjie to send Bill a letter while in the Navy. Marjie did that and their friendship began to develop again. Bill served as a lifeguard at Miramar Naval Air Station. He then was deployed to serve on the carrier USS Lexington. Bill and Marjie were married at First Baptist Church in Eugene, Oregon on September 18, 1955 and he was honorably discharged shortly thereafter. They moved to Eugene and their first child, Steve was born in December of 1956, followed by Bob in 1958, Lori in 1962 and Dan in 1970. While in Eugene, Bill worked at a sawmill, JC Penney, and also for a food broker selling a variety of canned goods. He then worked for Carnation Company, which took the family from Eugene to Spokane, Washington and eventually to Fresno, California.
Because Bill was busy raising a family with Marjie, he had to put college on hold. While in Fresno, he got his Bachelor’s Degree in History from Fresno State University in 1977. Bill worked for David and Sons and was transferred to San Diego.
In 1980, Bill and Marjie moved back to Oregon, where he worked for a couple of other food manufacturers, MacFarlane Lumber, Fred Meyer and finished his career driving school bus for North Clackamas School District, which he thought of as his mission field. In fact, in one of his journals he wrote, “One line that could be attached to my life is ‘he loved kids’.”
Bill was a life-long learner and an avid reader. He loved studying the Bible and history, which lead him to read a multitude of biographies, and pages and pages of study notes. Bill also taught Sunday School, led Boys Brigade and was active in the Bereans Sunday School class.
Bill is survived by his wife, Marjie; two sisters; a brother; four children and their spouses; nine grandchildren; and seventeen great-grandchildren.
A memorial service will be 10 a.m. on November 23, 2019 at GracePointe Church, Milwaukie, Oregon.
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