Monday, July 11, 2016

William Dahlquist Reese 1908 - 1997

William Dahlquist Reese passed away March 15, 1997 in Salt Lake City.

Born July 1, 1908 in Salt Lake to Enoch William and Ruth Adeliade Dahlquist Reese. Married Ruth Blosch April 18, 1933 in the Salt Lake LDS Temple. She passed away June 5, 1974. Married Dell Humphries in January 1976.

Mr. Reese resided in Glendale, California for 60 years.  Survived by wife, Dell; two sons, William Dennis and Janice of Las Vegas, NV, John R. and Gayle of Sandy, Utah; four stepdaughters, Carol and Roger Wilkins, Kathy and Jay Wooten, Barbara Stroud, Sheryl and Dale Butterfield; sister, Helen Flandro of Pocatello, ID; brother, Tom Reese of Ridgecrest, CA. Preceded in death by two brothers, Roy and Jack Reese.

Funeral services will be held Thursday, March 20, 1997 at 12 noon in the Crosspointe Ward, 1325 West 5550 South, where friends may call from 10:30-11:45 a.m. prior to services.
Interment, Salt Lake City Cemetery.
T 3/18 N 3/19


Bill was born July 1, 1908 to Enoch William Reese and Ruth Adelaide Dahlquist in Salt Lake City, Utah.  His father was an accountant at a Stage Company in SLC in 1930.  In 1932 Bill got an accounting degree from George Washington University.
He married Ruth Esther Blosch in 1933 in the Salt Lake City Temple.  They moved to California after the depression and ended up in Beverly Hills where he worked as an accountant.  
One day in 1935 he was riding the street car in the Atwater district near Hyperion Avenue and saw a help wanted sign in a home window.  He stopped and talked to a woman at the door who turned out to be Mrs Disney.  He got the job and worked for 11 years as an accountant and animator.  At the time Disney had very little cash so he paid William a little money and gave him stock in the company.  Some say he was the 7th employee Disney hired.  Eventually Disney moved into new Studios in Burbank.  William's son Bill remembers being taken to the Burbank Studios and being driven around in a fancy Packard Phaeton and playing with the company clown.  Disney loved entertaining the employees' children.
In 1948 he sold his Disney stock for $100,000 which was a fortune at the time.  He took the money and along with other investors invested in oil wells in Tehachapi.  The wells did well for six months then an earthquake in the area hit and he lost everything.  Bill never regained his wealth but he lived a good life in Glendale, CA.  He worked for Land Title Insurance which was sold a couple of times and eventually became Safeco Title.  At one time Ray Kroc offered him exclusive rights to McDonalds franchises in the San Fernando Valley but he decided to stay with Land Title Insurance Company.
For many years he was less active in the church but when his son Bill was called on a mission in 1959 he became active once again.   He served in a variety of positions including the Elders Quorum Presidency.  Bill had a particular liking for Bishop Callister and his home teacher Jim Martin.  He later served as the Financial Clerk under his son the bishop, or John Reese, in the 1980s.
Bill's wife Ruth Esther Blosch was born October 8, 1909 to Leo Blosch and Maria Dorothea Lehmitz in Salt Lake City.  Leo joined the church in Switzerland and in 1930 he made his living as a janitor in a bank in Salt Lake City.  Leo was totally dedicated to the church.  He served three missions for the church and went to the temple every day for 60 years.  While on his mission in 1918 he had 5 children at home including Ruth.  His wife Maria Dorothea Lehmitz got sick and the home was placed under quarantine.  No one was allowed to come into the home.  As Ruth's mother lay dead for three days, Ruth sat next to her pleading, "Momma Wake up!" over and over again.  She was nine years old. 
At the request of the brethren Leo stayed on his mission sending money home from savings to take care of his five children.  When the money arrived the family responsible spent most of the money on themselves.
When he came home from his mission Leo married another Maria referred to as Maria2.  They had four boys together.  One day while waiting for a street car, in the crosswalk, she was struck by a car and killed.  Leo then married Elsa Hausman from Germany who was unkind to the children and tried to discourage Leo from going to Bill and Ruths temple sealing in the Salt Lake Temple.  If there was one thing Ruth learned from her childhood it was the importance of a good mother in the home. So it was no surprise she was called to serve in the Primary in the Glendale West Ward.  She served for 35 years which must be a record.  Bill remembers Elaine Gardiner picking her up and giving her a ride to a Primary. She was particularly good friends with Elaine as well Velma Larkin and Zina Dastarup.  Kent Gardiner remembers her teaching the children in opening exercises.
When Ruth was 58 she contracted Parkinson's disease and Bill retired early so he could take care of her which he did for five years. She died June 5, 1974 from the effects of the disease. 
He married Eudella Humphries.  They had a happy life together and she took good care of him.
Bill died March 7, 1997 and is buried in the Salt Lake City Cemetery next to his two wives.

Documents related to William Reese:

Where Bill Reese worked

 1930 census: