Cover photo for William Jean Halligan's Obituary
William Jean Halligan Profile Photo

William Jean Halligan

d. October 12, 2011

William Jean Halligan

William Jean Halligan, 84, passed away Wednesday, October 12, 2011 under hospice care at the Tompkins Memorial Health Center.

William Jean was the first of eleven children born to William Anthony and Margaret Ellen (Morgan) Halligan on September 15, 1927 in Moorland, Iowa. He was known as Bill to his friends but Jean to his family. He married Virginia Trost on September 7, 1953.

He joined the Merchant Marines when he was 16 and traveled to ports of South America, Korea, Africa and Europe. After this tour he joined the United States Marine Corp where he received a medical discharge. He was out of the service for four years before being drafted into the United States Army where he served in France and Germany.

William Jean attended Junior College where he earned his G.E.D. He worked various jobs from the time he was very young. While working for the Illinois Central Railroad he became President of the Railroad Brotherhood Union. He also worked as an iron worker on high construction. Enjoying all sports he became a very good bowler and published a bowling paper that was circulated in Iowa. Having learned the game of golf from his work as a caddy, he loved golf and turned pro for a short time before opening his own business, The Caddy Shack, where he sold golf equipment and gave lessons. W. J. loved card games especially poker.

He had both knees replaced but arthritis and neuropathy caused him much pain and the inability to get around on his own. He moved to Friendship Haven for rehab and enjoyed social calls from many friends, family and sometimes four footed friends. Early in 2011 he was diagnosed with esophageal cancer which eventually took his life.

William Jean was preceded in death by his parents, brother, James Bernard and a sister Margie Ann (Mert) Hurdel, a nephew William John Newberry, grandparents, aunts and uncles. He is survived by his wife, Virginia, daughter, Holly Jean (Andy) Bouman, son, Erin, two brothers, Donald (Eleanor), Kenneth (Deanna), six sisters, Adeline (Richard) Ruge, Esther (Ronald) Spoo, Lucille (Robert) Cadwell, Georgia (Dee) Brainerd, Carol (James) Reis and Charlotte Newberry.

The family would like to thank Pastor Henderson of St. Paul Lutheran Church for calling on Jean as well as the wonderful staff at Friendship Haven for their loving care.

Memorial services will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday, October 15, 2011 in the Chapel of St. Paul Lutheran Church with the Rev. Allen Henderson officiating.

Bruce-Graham Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.


Fort Dodge Area Funeral & Cremation Service, Bruce Funeral Home

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