William ‘Bill’ Paxton Roberts, Jr.


(May 15, 1927 - Dec. 13, 2010)

Bill Roberts, formerly of Deaver, died Monday, Dec. 13, 2010, in Sheridan, attended by his three daughters.

His health had declined for several years.

Bill was born May 15, 1927, to William Paxton “Pax” Roberts and Gertrude “Peg” Wicker Roberts in Sheridan.

He spent his early years in Sheridan and on the ranch near Kirby, Mont. He loved exploring on horseback. He attended school in Sheridan and Kirby and gradated from Kemper Military School in Missouri. Following graduation, he entered the Navy and was stationed at the Great Lakes Naval Station in Illinois. He served as a Seaman First Class.

After being discharged from the Navy, he attended the University of Wyoming, receiving a degree in animal science.

He married Susan Totman on Sept. 7, 1949. She preceded him in death on March 8, 1998. They had three daughters: Kitty, Jody and Pattie.

He was recalled for service for the Korean War and transferred to the Army. He served as a First Lieutenant with the 9th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division from 1952-’53, arriving back in the United States three weeks before the truce was signed. He received a Bronze Star and a Combat Infantry Badge.

He did graduate work in agricultural economics at the University of Wyoming and in economics at the University of Chicago. He was employed as a teacher and researcher at the University of Wyoming from 1955-1969. He entered ranching in the Laramie area and moved to Deaver in 1976. He taught part-time at Northwest College and raised Paso Fino horses.

He enjoyed hunting, fishing and writing. He wrote a couple of children’s stories.

He is survived by his three daughters, Kitty (Jim) Routson of Billings, Jody Roberts of Sheridan and Pattie (Art) Bergstrom of Banner; six grandchildren, Pax Routson, Molly (J.R.) Friesen, Jana Mines, Scott Mines, Stacie (Lance) West and Clint Bergstrom; three great-grandchildren, Riley West, Reece West and Titus Friesen (born Dec. 8); and one sister, Caroline (Denny) Jones of Thermopolis.

He also had several special friends who helped him over the years: Bill Dobbs, Tom Sanderson, Sal Hurtado and Vicki Olson. He was very grateful for all they did for him.

Bill briefly lived at the Heartland Assisted Living Center in Powell and at Westview Health Care Center in Sheridan.

A funeral service will be held at 10 a.m. on Thursday, Dec. 16 at Champion Ferries Funeral in Sheridan, with Rev. Doug Melius officiating. Interment will be in Sheridan Municipal Cemetery. Arrangements are with Champion Ferries Funeral Home.

A memorial service will be held around his birthday, May 15, in Powell next spring.

Memorials may benefit Pryor Mountain Wild Mustang Center, Box 385, Lovell, WY 82431.