On Tuesday, April 18, 2023, William “BILL” Lewis went home to be with the Lord. Bill was born in Bakersfield, California, to Nelson Lewis and Mary Freeborn Lewis and resided in Buttonwillow, California, his entire childhood. He graduated from Shafter high school in 1966. Bill married Sue Jacobs and they had two children, Charlotte and Billy.
Bill had the heart of a farmer and followed in his father’s footsteps, farming and ranching in Buttonwillow, California. After the death of his parents, Bill left farming and pursued other careers. Bill sold farm equipment, drove the local ambulance, owned a stop-smoking & weight loss business and a liquor/sporting goods store.
Bill found s new passion when he joined the Kern County Sheriff’s Office as a reserve Deputy Sheriff. In 1986, Bill joined the Sheriff’s Office full time as a Deputy Sheriff, following the advice his father had given to his teenage son, to find a career in public service.
Bill loved the Sheriff’s Office and spent time in detentions, transportation, and detectives, but mostly enjoyed working patrol, where he could utilize his love of people. In 1995, Bill met his soulmate in jail, another Deputy Sheriff, Kelli Barnett Weigand. Bill retired after 27 years of service to the residents of Kern County.
Bill and Kelli married on May 12, 2007, at their home in Bakersfield, California, where they lived until they retired. They spent many years traveling, golfing and hosting gatherings for friends and family.
In 2016, Bill and Kelli, bought a home in Townsend, Montana. They later moved to Toston, Montana, where they lived until his passing. Bill considered Montana his home and loved both the beautiful country and the people.
Bill loved the lord and his church. He served as a Steward and greeter at Faith Baptist Church. Bill often said he was ready to be with the Lord, when the Lord was ready for him.
Bill was preceded in death by both parents, daughter Charlotte, son Billy, step-son Nathan, brother Roger, and sister Bonnie.
He is survived by wife Kelli, Sister Margaret Hatten, step-son Justin Weigand, grandchildren Cynthia Joslin, Kayla Lewis, Tyler and McKenzie Sterling, great- grandchildren, Miley, Emily, Travis, Leighann, Kyri, Kora, and Clairie.
A celebration of Life will be held at Faith Baptist Church, 5 Jack Farm Rd, Townsend, Montana, on Saturday April 29, at 11:00 am. A reception will follow.
Bills cremains will be scattered on the property of his nephew Roger, a place where Bill loved to fellowship, hunt, and enjoy nature.
Kelli and the Lewis family, would like to thank their church family and the communities of Townsend and Toston, for their outpouring of generosity, support and kindness. It has been a testimony that Montana is truly the “Last Best Place.”