not related - for your info only
"Uncle Bill" Bawden, 86, of San Dimas, CA died January 21, 2007 while being hospitalized at Pomona Valley Medical Center. Shortly after his birth on May 31, 1920 in Lena, Illinois, he and his family moved to Pasadena, California. Bill spent most of his childhood at The David and Margaret's Home in La Verne, CA (which was an orphanage at that time). He was a U.S. Navy Veteran of World War II. Bill was very proud to communicate as well as show pictures to all that he was stationed on the ship U.S.S. Tangier. While on the ship, his rank was Aviation Chief Machinist's Mate C. After the war, Bill returned to California. He attended The California State University of Los Angeles and received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration and a Master of Arts degree in Education. After that, he attended California Baptist Seminary and received a Master of Divinity degree. Bill loved children and advanced to earn both an Elementary School and Administrative Credential. He taught for the Azusa Unified School District for 30 years. While retired, Bill was a very busy man. He was known as an "amazing man with unlimited energy who made every effort to make a difference in everyone's life." He spent many days and hours volunteering for a community service group called the Civitans as well serving as the famous and much love "Greeter" and/or "The Man in the Red Coat" at the Pomona First Baptist Church. While volunteering for the Civitans, Bill helped provide elementary school children with full Thanksgiving and Christmas feasts, many birthday gifts and many lunches at various kid restaurants in San Dimas -- where he was a resident for over 30 years. Every child Bill came in contact with adored and loved him. When he walked into a classroom, he became a human climbing tree. Bill even made arrangements to take a very ill child to his doctor's appointments at Children's hospital. One teacher said, "Bill truly knows how to tap into a child who is in need or hurting." One student wrote: "My adopted uncle's name is Bill Bawden. Bill makes me happy. He takes me and my class to Burger King. I love Bill because he is my best friend in the whole world. Bill is a good person. He comes to my school to make me happy. We all love him so very much. Bill walks like an angel. He speaks like an eagle. His hair is white as snow. He dresses like a beautiful man. When he visits my class, he lines up with me. I love Bill because he loves me!" In 1992, Bill received a national award from the Claremont Unified School District. Called the "Intergenerational National Volunteer Award," this is an Outstanding School Volunteer Award given to individuals who work directly with students, teachers and administrators. As the famous "Greeter" at Pomona First Baptist he always had a big smile as he greeted everyone and said, "Hello, young lady or man!" He so loved the Lord and his church and was a faithful servant. Presently, while in the hospital and before entering into a coma, Bill sang with his adopted niece his most loved hymn, "Onward Christian Soldiers." As well as volunteering, Bill enjoyed meeting his buddies every Monday through Friday at a local McDonald's restaurant, visiting with his friends at Vineyard Bank, The San Dimas Senior Citizen Center, and the City Manager, Blaine Michaelis' office's who he addressed as "Mr. San Dimas." Bill is survived by his half brothers Kenneth and Bud and adoptive niece Patti Salwak. Visitation will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. today at Todd Memorial Chapel, Pomona. Services will be held at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday at Pomona First Baptist Church, Pomona. A reception will follow. Burial will be made at 2 p.m. Wednesday at Riverside National Cemetery in Riverside. Todd Mortuary is in charge of arrangements.
Published in the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin on 1/23/2007.