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William Bruce Merrill

09/04/1929 - 06/20/2023
Service Date: 07/01/2023
Service Time: 10:00 am
Service Location: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 2152 E Adobe St
Visitation Date: 06/30/2023
Visitation Time: 6-8:00 pm
Visitation Location: Bunker Garden Chapel 33 N Centennial Way Mesa, AZ 85201
Interment: Mountain View Memorial Gardens

William Bruce Merrill 93 years of age passed through the veil from mortality into the presence of God on June 20, 2023, in Mesa, Arizona. William was born on September 4, 1929, in Hayden, Arizona. He was the last of nine children of Pearl and Edgar Merrill. He is preceded in death by his parents Pearl Smith Merrill Duke and Edgar Merrill, his sisters Belva Merrill Slade, Ella Merrill Anderson, Irma Merrill Fullagar Smith, Christy Maxine and brothers Calvin, Herbert, Steven, and Gene. William’s father Edgar passed away in 1930 and the family relocated from Hayden to Kimball Street in Mesa. Mother Pearl remarried Thomas Duke in 1934 and the family with the three youngest boys moved to a farm in Provo Utah. William at the age of 16 joined the United States Marine Corps. He was sworn in on July 24, 1946, in Salt Lake City, Utah, and served until 1948. He married Vada Crawford in 1947 in Hawthorn, Nevada they had two children and were divorced in 1953. He worked for the Reno Fire Department from 1952 to 1954 as a Hose man, then Tiller on the ladder truck. Upon returning to Arizona in 1956 he married Dorothy Felix in time settling in Mesa they had two children. William retired as a Lieutenant, from the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office in 1978, having served 22 years. That same year he became Chief of Police of Paradise Valley. In 1981 after again retiring from his law enforcement career and teaching Criminal Justice at Mesa Community College he started driving Tour Bus all over the country until 1996 when he retired and never worked again. He was a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 60th Ward. William had four children: Sue Ellen (Mike) Banks, William Jr. who died in 1978, Nancy Maria (Dale) Davis, and Todd Ellis (Debbie) Merrill. Eight Grandchildren: April, Justin, Jimmy, Jason, Elena, Thomas, Catalina, and Ava. Five Great-Grandchildren Steven, Layni, Lexi, Brooke, and Hanna. Four Great-Great-Grandsons: Hudson, Charlie, Beckham, and Dakarai. Visitation is Friday, June 30, 2023, from 6-8 pm, at Bunkers Garden Chapel, 33 N. Centennial Way, Mesa. Funeral Services are Saturday, July 1, 2023, at 10 am, at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Chapel 2152 E. Adobe St., Mesa. Interment to follow at Mountain View Cemetery. For More Information go to www.bunkersfuneral.com


Arrangements by Bunker’s Garden Chapel, www.bunkerfuneral.com. Should this obituary appear anywhere but bunkerfuneral.com, please check our website for accurate details and service information.


  • God speed my friend, may you rest in peace. It has been my honor to know you. Someday, God willing, we will meet at the confluence.

  • Barbara Merritt

    R I P Bill. I’ll never forget our get togethers, the shows at the senior center, and the laughs we had. Our group is much smaller now. You will be missed……….

  • Bob and Carol Tomasic

    Bill was a trusted friend who will be missed by all who have had the privilege of knowing him. We will never forget the great times that we had with Bill and friends and all the laughs, that lasted for many years, about inside jokes. Bill is in a better place now and leaves us as one of the original “characters”.

  • Dear Merrill family, You all are in my thoughts and prayers. In Christian Love, Judy Antrim

  • Jacquelyn Merrill Leseberg

    Will miss uncle Bill-Bruce so much. Sorry I have not bean able to see him for many years. Rest in peace Uncle Bruce❤️‍🩹❤️‍🩹

  • Prayers for the family

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