William Norval Ash, beloved husband, brother, uncle, and friend to many went to his eternal home with his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, Wednesday, September 4, 2019, at the age of 75. He passed suddenly in the presence of his wife doing what he enjoyed, boating.
He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Margaret (Peg) Bohne Ash. Bill and Peg celebrated their 50th anniversary on June 21, 2019. He is also survived by two brothers, Dale Ash (friend Jane Avery) of St. Louis, Missouri, and Randy Ash (Gae) of Victoria, Minnesota, and mother-in-law Virginia Bohne of Atlanta, Georgia, brother-in-law Bill Bohne (Linda) of Atlanta, Georgia, and sister-in-law Kristine Demchuk (Reverend Robert) of Chicago, Illinois. He will be missed by his 10 nephews and nieces, 19 great-nephews and nieces, and 1 great, great nephew.
Bill was preceded in death by his parents, Norval and Helen Ash of Des Peres, Missouri.
Bill was born to Norval and Helen Ash on April 30, 1944. Bill was 18 months old before seeing his father who was serving overseas during World War II. He became a child of God through baptism on May 28, 1944 at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church and School, Des Peres, Missouri where he attended elementary school and was later confirmed on March 30, 1958. Bill graduated from Kirkwood High School in Kirkwood, Missouri in 1962. While attending Kirkwood High School Bill sang in the school choir, sang in a quartet, and lettered as an athletic manager for several sports. During his high school years he was also very active in his church including leadership roles in the youth group. He continued his education at Concordia Teachers College in River Forest, Illinois in pursuit of an elementary teaching degree. He sang in Concordia’s Kapelle Choral Group which sang at the National Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony in Washington DC in 1966. It was during his internship in 1965-1966, that he met his future wife, Margaret "Peg" Bohne. Bill went on to complete a Masters in Education degree with an emphasis in administration. Bill and Peg were married on June 21, 1969 at Ashburn Lutheran Church, Chicago, Illinois.
Bill entered into ministry in the Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod as an elementary school teacher, 4th grade, and youth minister at Emmanuel Lutheran Church and School in Aurora, Illinois in 1968. In 1971 he accepted the call to be principal and 7th / 8th grade teacher at Zion Lutheran Church and School in Lyons, Illinois. In 1976 he became vacancy principal at 1st Lutheran School in Blue Island, Illinois. Bill went on to serve as Director of Christian Education at Lutheran Church of Atonement in Barrington, Illinois, Director of Youth Ministry at St. John Lutheran Church in Woodstock, Illinois, and 4th grade teacher and Director of Christian Education at Our Savior’s First Lutheran Church and School in Granada Hills, California. Bill and Peg moved to Idaho Falls in 1989 where he served as a substitute teacher in area schools until retirement in 2008.
Bill’s heart, his priority has always been his relationship first with God (faith), then family, and then friends. He loved God and cared for people. Throughout his life, Bill loved to participate in worship, be active in the fellowship of believers, and serve his church in whatever way needed. At Hope Lutheran Church he served as Director of Evangelism; Director of Properties, sang in the choir and Praises Unlimited, and served as an elder. Bill had a passionate devotion to his wife and his family. He truly was so proud of his wife and family and loved spending time with each of them. He loved traveling with Peg; sightseeing, visiting family and friends, and taking nephews and nieces on trips. Bill was the family "archivist" taking pictures at any and all family and friend activities and events and keeping them organized in photo albums. Our family history comes to life through his photo albums. He was the family patriarch and went to great lengths to stay connected to family both immediate and extended. He always remembered birthdays, special events / celebrations, and Christmas with greeting cards. If you wanted to know anything about family history, Bill was the go to person. The family was so very blessed to have been together this year to celebrate his 75th birthday.
When Bill wasn’t spending time with Peg, family, and friends he loved being on the lake boating and occasionally fishing. He enjoyed being out in the yard doing yard work and other projects around the house. He loved watching sports and was a huge St. Louis Cardinal baseball fan and a newly converted Minnesota Viking fan. Whenever you saw Bill at an event he was probably carrying a camera and taking pictures. He loved good food and conversation. He had the gift of "gab." You knew when you started a conversation with Bill, it would last a while, ha! Don’t ever ask Bill to play cards. That was not his gift and most often a source of frustration for him and laughter for us. Bill will be greatly missed! But his deep-seated faith and love for God, his overwhelming love for family, and the wonderful memories that he captured for us through photos with live on in each and every one of us. He wants all of you to be with him someday in heaven.
Funeral services will be held at Hope Lutheran Church, 2071 12th Street, in Idaho Falls on Thursday, September 12, 2019 at 11:00 am. There will be a short time of visitation on Thursday from 10:00 – 11:00 am at the church prior to the funeral service.
Memorials can be made in Bill’s honor to the Properties Fund of Hope Lutheran Church or a charity of your choice.