William “Bill” McFarlane, 80, passed early in the morning of November 22, 2020. He was born to the late Peter Edward McFarlane and Frances Hester on January 21, 1940 in South Bend and remained a lifelong resident. In addition to his parents, Bill was preceded in death by his siblings Barbara Madison and Frances McFarlane as well as brothers Ronald and Robert McFarlane.
Bill was a sweet, earnest man who accomplished the rare feat of moving through the world with total kindness, leaving everyone he met with a warm feeling and a smile. He worked for many years at the South Bend Tribune as a district manager overseeing the newspaper carriers and then as a delivery driver for DHL, formerly Airborne Express. He was a proud member of Teamsters local 364 and enjoyed his work for the opportunity it afforded to meet new and interesting people every day.
Bill’s sunny outlook on life often led him to declare each new day the “bluest sky” he’d ever seen or a meal the best he’d ever had, and everyone was his “best friend.” He was overjoyed by the simplest gift for the thought behind it. He loved watching Sammy, Tiger, Walter, and Michael. More than anything, he loved his Cubs. From the day he retired, Bill never missed a Cubs game on tv, from the era of VHS through DVR. His lifelong dream as a diehard Cubs fan was fulfilled when in 2016 he was able to see the Cubs finally win the World Series.
Bill was a loving husband, father, step-father, and grandfather, always the first to cheerfully greet family in the door on holidays and Sunday visits. He was genuinely amazed at watching his children and grandchildren grow and flourish over the years. His warm smile and often silly words will be dearly missed.
Bill is survived by his devoted wife, Carol, his brother Jim (Bev) McFarlane of Oregon, his children Marlo (Matt) Hofmann of Indianapolis and Edward McFarlane of South Bend; step-children Megan (Austin) Sheraton of South Bend, Heather (David) Frye of Florida, Joseph (Kathy) Blank of North Carolina and Matthew (Heather) Blank of Florida. He is also survived by his 20 grandchildren: Justin and Ethan Hofmann; Jordon, Jeremy, and Tiffany Landry; Kaitlyn, David (Suzie), Cameron (Kacey), Alyssa, Dillon, and Dalton Blank; Sam, Max (Katie), Anna, and Ben Ujdak; Leo and Chase Sheraton; and Tim, Ellie, and Natalie Frye. Bill is also survived by his beloved dog “Oscar,” whom the rest of the family know as Oliver.
The family would like to offer their most sincere gratitude to the caregivers at Heart to Heart Hospice of Mishawaka for their exceptional care. Their kindness and compassion helped Bill and Carol during a very difficult time more than words can express. The family would also like to thank the staff at Morningview Assisted Living Facility for taking such good care of Bill over the past few months.
There will be a visitation from 3-7 pm on Friday, November 27th at Kaniewski Funeral Home, 3545 N. Bendix Dr., South Bend. A private funeral service for family will take place on Saturday, November 28. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Bill’s memory to Heart to Heart Hospice.
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