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William Edward PutnamMay 30, 1928 ~ July 8, 2017 (age 89)
William "Bill" Putnam passed away peacefully on the morning of Saturday, July 8, 2017. Bill (or Billy, as his mother called him) was born in Kanab, Utah on May 30, 1928 to Hugh and Nellie Putnam. Hugh was in the forest service, so the family moved around quite a bit. After living in Kanab until Bill was about six years old, the family moved to Williams, AZ. Bill had fond memories of Williams, including the time that he and his brother Ray purchased a 1927 Ford for $12. They named the car "The Speed Demon" and it wasn't long until they were using "The Speed Demon" to help the family move to Albuquerque, NM. The family lived in Albuquerque for a couple of years before moving to Santa Fe and not long after that back to Albuquerque.
Bill married Norma Mickelson on June 28, 1969 in Grace, ID and they were later sealed in the Logan LDS temple for time and all eternity. They have two daughters, Jane and Jill. Bill was a good dad and tried to teach his children about work ethic, honesty, and respect.
Bill held several jobs during his life. He was drafted into the Army during the Korean War where he was first trained in the skill on demolitions and next trained as a helicopter mechanic. He loved both areas, but he especially liked being a helicopter mechanic. Bill liked order, and fixing things brought that natural order to things. After the Army, Bill purchased a Phillips 66 station on Route 66 in Albuquerque. He was well liked as a gas station owner and had many great stories to tell about the time he owned the station. His station was also the first U-Haul rental in Albuquerque. After a time, Bill grew tired of the busy life of a gas station owner, so he sold the station and got a job at Sandia National Laboratories as a testing mechanic. Basically he was paid to try to break things. It was a great job and he loved it. He worked at Sandia for 25 years before he retired. Not long after he retired from the Labs, he was approached by another company to come work for them as a consultant to Sandia. He accepted that job and worked for them for about another two years.
During all of this time (and up until 2013) he also worked hard tending to the family orchard in Los Lunas, NM. Bill was proud of the work he did at the orchard and of the produce the family was able to grow there. For many years he and his brother Ray would take the produce to the grower's market early in the morning every week. He would also help his wife, Norma, sell produce out of their back yard in Albuquerque.
Bill and Norma were a good team and they enjoyed working on projects together. They made all sorts of things like tables, shelves, and other functional household items from supplies they purchased at the Air Force salvage yard. Bill also helped Norma upholster furniture for friends. They liked to work in the yard and at the orchard together.
Bill was a loving husband and father who considered caring for his family his most important job.
Bill leaves behind his wife Norma M. Putnam, two daughters Jane P. Smart (Kevin) and Jill Putnam, and three grandchildren Alexander J. Smart (Cortney), Sarah J. Smart, and Emily J. Smart. He is preceded in death by his father Hugh E. Putnam, mother Nellie B. Putnam, and brother Hugh R. "Ray" Putnam.
Funeral services will be held on Monday, July 17 at 11 am at Russon Brothers Mortuary in Bountiful, UT (295 N. Main Street). Those who are unable to attend the services but would like to view a live streaming of the funeral should contact Jane Smart. In lieu of flowers, please donate to Best Friends Animal Sanctuary, Wasatch Adaptive Sports Program, breast cancer research, or the charity of your choice.