News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

William Rich Reed November 28, 1924 – January 28, 2020

William Rich Reed passed at his beloved Cold Springs Ranch, surrounded by family, on January 28. He was 95.

Bill was born in Portland, Oregon, on November 28, 1924, to Mable and Julian Reed.

His childhood was filled with adventures, riding horses with his cousin, Don Mayne, at the family ranch in Skamania, Washington, skiing Mt. Hood and fly-fishing with his father, Duke, in Kaskela, Oregon. A fortuitous life-altering moment occurred in the first grade at Irvington Grade School when he met Hannah Lou Freeman.

In his youth, he worked at a fish cannery in Alaska, which led to a lifelong hatred of fish.

He graduated from Grant High School, where he was student body president. In 1943, he enlisted in the infantry. He was transferred into the Army Air Corps three months later. He held a commercial pilot certificate, single- and multi-engine airplanes and instrument airplane, B-24 bomber type-rated. He was issued orders to join the forces overseas just days before the war ended.

After the end of World War II, he spent three years at the University of Oregon, a member of Beta Rho Chapter of Beta Theta Pi fraternity.

On September 14, 1946, he married Hannah Lou, his childhood sweetheart. They remained in Portland, where he graduated from Portland State University with a BS in business. While finishing his degree, he worked as a hod carrier at Portland Racetrack to support his new family.

The Reeds had two sons, Bill and Mike. After graduation, Bill became an insurance broker. In 1957, he founded the highly respected W.R. Reed and Company General Insurance in Portland. That agency was sold in 2009 to Brown and Brown Insurance, still in business today.

In 1977, he was the president of Multnomah Athletic Club in southwest Portland. He was also a board member of Waverly Country Club.

Several visits to Sisters with his friends, Harry and Leita Pajutee, resulted in the 1966 purchase of Cold Springs Ranch, where he and Hannah Lou and their family spent weekends, holidays and vacations. His enjoyment of both alpine and Nordic skiing was enhanced in Sisters, where he also spent many happy hours on golf courses. He also had a passion for squash.

With his best friend, Bob Spahr, he began development in Sisters with the construction of Coldwell Banker Reed Brothers Realty building and Town Square. That led to investment with his sons in the purchase of Hotel Sisters and building Brittany Square.

When their sons built homes on Cold Springs Ranch as permanent residents of Sisters and managing partners of Reed Brothers Realty, Bill and Hannah Lou spent more of their time on the ranch. In 2007, they relocated from Portland to Aspen Lakes. It was there, after 67 years together, that he said goodbye to the love of his life when she passed with him by her side in 2013.

Bill returned to Cold Springs Ranch in 2017, which was now home to some of his family and Mike. His life there was filled with joy with constant visits by his son, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, along with a multitude of Sisters friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Hannah Lou; son, William Jr .; and daughter-in-law, Jan.

He is survived by a legacy of family: son, Mike; grandchildren, Ashley (Aaron) Okura of Sisters; Ryan (Jen) of Gallatin, Tennessee; and Brittany (Andy) Kaiser of Eugene; great-grandchildren, Aurora and Freja Reed, Kylie Kaiser, and Kaleo and Reed Okura.

In lieu of flowers, please donate to a charity of your choice. The family supports the Bill and Jan Reed Scholarship Fund. c/o Sisters Schools Foundation, PO Box 2155, Sisters, OR 97759 or Sisters Schools Foundation.


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