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William ‘Bill’ M. Corbett

(Aug. 10, 1925 - Dec. 13, 2013)

William “Bill” M. Corbett, 88, died Friday, Dec. 13, 2013, at Spirit Mountain Hospice in Cody.

Bill was born Aug. 10, 1925, the son of George Corbett and Leona Benson in McFadden, Wyo. He attended schools in Red Lodge, Mont., McFadden and Sylvan Grove, Kan.

On Nov. 15, 1943, Bill joined the Army, completed basic training and trained recruits until he was shipped to England for the invasion of Europe. Bill landed on Omaha Beach six days after D-Day and was wounded on Aug. 9, 1944, while the Allies were taking St. Lo, France. He returned to action in December 1944, and was wounded again in January 1945, while supporting the Battle of Bulge. Bill was honorably discharged in November 1945, and went to work for the Illinois Pipeline in McFadden.

After deciding that working on a drilling rig was better than digging pipeline ditches by hand in the winter, he went to work for the Ohio Oil Company on a company drilling rig. While working in Sidney, Neb., Bill met Virginia Nichols and they were married in Raton, N.M., on May 18, 1950.

Bill worked for Ohio Oil Company and Marathon Oil Company for more than 40 years in the drilling department with a great deal of his service time overseas. His first overseas assignment, 1959-66, was in Libya working for the Oasis Oil Company. He also spent time in Ireland and Pakistan. While in Ireland, Bill was involved in the Kinsale Head Gas Field discovery and in Pakistan part of the team that performed a beach landing with a drilling rig.

Following his international assignments, Bill and Virginia moved to Lafayette, La., then settled in Cody in 1978. Perhaps his most defining achievement before retiring in 1986 was the helicopter drilling rig operation on Wapiti in the Shoshone National Forest. Bill and Virginia enjoyed traveling and spending summers at their cabin on Kitty Creek.

Bill was preceded in death by his parents; brother Howard; sister Juanita; daughter Donna Snyder and his wife Virginia. His grandson Aaron Snyder of Powell died Dec. 29, 2013.

Bill is survived by his son, Monty (Barbara) of Cody; brother George of Broomfield, Colo.; grandchildren, Brandy Corbett Bessemer of Billings, Sherri Corbett Ridley of Billings  and Michael Snyder of Laramie; nine great-grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.

Cremation has taken place and memorial services are planned at 11 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 11, at Ballard Funeral Home. Lunch and fellowship will follow at the VFW Post 2673 in Cody. Memorial donations can be made to the Wounded Warrior Project.

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