Darwin LaVell (Bill) Staley


Bill Staley passed away at his home in Evanston at the age of 90. He was born Feb. 4, 1930, in Coalville, Utah, to Otto LaVell and Elva (Meadows) Staley as the fourth of six children. On Nov. 24, 1950, Bill married Donna Huffman in Coalville, Utah. They were later sealed in the Salt Lake City LDS Temple. They were married 65 years prior to her death in 2016.

Bill’s early school years were in a one-room schoolhouse in Upton, Utah. He graduated from North Summit High School in 1948, and worked as a cowboy on the Deseret Land and Livestock ranch when he got the call to serve his country during the Korean Conflict.

As an active member of the LDS Church, Bill held many positions including the Bishopric, Branch Presidency of the Needles Branch, Scoutmaster and in Sunday school. Bill dedicated over 65 years of his life to the Boy Scouts of America and the Scouting program, where he received numerous Scouting awards. Many years were spent constructing and maintaining Camp New Fork for all scouters to enjoy. It was his home away from home.

To provide for his family early on, he worked in the construction industry until he was hired full-time by Union Pacific Railroad. He retired from the railroad in 1992. During their retirement years, Bill and Donna enjoyed their summers in the mountains of Wyoming, enjoying Mother Nature at her finest. They loved to travel and were always on the go, looking for their next adventure. There was nothing Bill loved more than camping, fishing and hunting with his family and friends.

Dad was also very talented in woodworking and gardening. He spent many hours in his woodshop cutting big boards into little boards and creating beautiful projects that he gifted with love. He had quite the green thumb and could grow the most beautiful garden. Weeding, watering and watching his bounty grow brought him true joy. Whenever a deer would stop to snack from his garden he would say, “It’s nice to share.” And share his garden he did! He often said the best part of his garden was giving it to, and sharing it with, his family, friends and neighbors.

Bill is preceded in death by his wife, Donna H. Staley; his parents; brothers, Owen, LaMont and Kent; an infant sister, Dorothy; a daughter-in-law, Debra K. Staley; and a great-grandson, Blayd Templin.

He is survived by his four children, Shellie (Dave) St. Priest of Evanston, Steven (Joan E.) Staley of Afton, Dan (Susan) Staley of Evanston and Suzanne (John) Small of Evanston; a brother, Dennis Staley of Roy, Utah; a sister-in-law, Veda Staley of Evanston; sister-in-law and brother-in-law Dorothy and Raymond Louder of Coalville, Utah; 14 grandchildren; and 32 great-grandchildren.

A graveside service for Bill will take place at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 5, at the Evanston City Cemetery for friends and family. There will also be an opportunity to pay respects from 12:30-1:30 p.m. Saturday at Crandall Funeral Home in Evanston.

Condolences may be made at www.crandallfhevanston.com.

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