William Raymond Starnes, Feb. 18, 1935 — May 18, 2014

Tuesday, May 20, 2014 | 9:33 p.m. CDT; updated 9:38 p.m. CDT, Tuesday, May 20, 2014

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. — William Raymond “Bill” Starnes, 79, of Bloomington died at 4:00 p.m. Sunday, May 18, 2014, as a result of complications from Parkinson’s and having suffered a stroke. He died at his home with his wife and friends by his side.

His funeral will be at 11 a.m. Wednesday, May 21, 2014 at Carmody-Flynn Williamsburg Funeral Home, Bloomington. Visitation will be from 10-11 a.m. Wednesday, May 21, 2014 at the funeral home. A graveside service will be at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 24, 2014 at Memorial Park Cemetery in Columbia, Missouri.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Semper Fi Fund ( or to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (

He was born February 18, 1935 in Columbia, Missouri, the only child of Levy Adolphus and Helen Miles Starnes. He was previously married to Sharon Parman, Carolyn Roberts and Judith Ann Dawson. Bill married Jeanne Blair on December 6, 1984. She survives in Bloomington.

He was preceded in death by his parents.

Bill grew up in Columbia, Missouri where he played on championship football teams at Hickman High School and was awarded a football scholarship to the University of Missouri. He went on to earn his Bachelor of Science degree in agricultural economics in 1961. He was very proud to have been able to work his way through college, mostly hanging drywall. From 1956-1958, he served in the United States Marine Corps, proudly protecting the Mojave Desert from his Headquarters Company payroll desk at the base in 29 Palms, CA. Bill began his career with State Farm Insurance Companies at the regional office in Columbia and transferred to Corporate Headquarters in 1973. He retired from State Farm Insurance Companies in 1990, after 26 years of employment as a Staff Associate in Service and Systems.

Bill was passionate about cars and greatly enjoyed watching movies. A gentle soul, he cared for all of God’s creatures and was known to feed wild geese and ducks. He would even occasionally save a distraught mouse trapped in the window well of his home. In his retirement, Bill focused his attention on helping his wife with household duties and caring for his home and yard. He loved to take daily long walks on the Constitution Trail.

Perhaps Bill’s greatest accomplishment was being a best friend and life partner to Jeanne.

Bill’s family is especially grateful to the chaplain staff of Advocate BroMenn Medical Center for their caring support.

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