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William “Bill” Ellis Iredale


illiam “Bill” Ellis Iredale was born in Glendale, California on February 24, 1927 to Claude and Edith (Brubaker) Iredale (California Storytelling Girl). He passed away on August 3, 2018 at Bay Pines VA Medical Center surrounded by his loving family.


Bill is survived by his loving wife of 37 years, Barbara Sweet-Iredale. Barbara and Bill met in Marina Del Rey and after only two weeks of courtship, Bill proposed to Barbara. Together they moved to Hawaii and married on May 23, 1981. Additionally, Bill is survived by children Claudette, Robert, Bill Jr., and Jeannie; stepdaughters Alicia, Andrea and her husband Jay; thirteen grandchildren and twelve great-grandchildren.


Bill’s life adventurous journey of 91 1/2 years presented a visionary entrepreneurial outlook for career choices. God guided his heart and filled his passion to serve others and his country with honor and respect. Bill’s accomplishments were many and he touched the lives of so many. In high school he formed and played in his Big Band performing around southern CA. Following his college career at UCLA, Bill joined the Coast Guard and proudly served in the southern Pacific during World War II. On his 18th birthday Bill landed Marines on the beaches of Iwo Jima. The second flag that was raised on Iwo Jima came off of Bill’s landing craft. Along with the infamous battle on Iwo Jima, Bill’s Coast Guard career took him to the Battle of Leyte Gulf, Peleliu, the Philippines, and finally to Korea.


The movie, Mr. Roberts, a 1955 Academy Award Winner, was based on some of Bill’s experiences in the Coast Guard. Yes he did throw the palm tree overboard. Bill also served as a councilman for the City of La Mirada, CA. He worked in management for the Sears Corp. and initiated the slogan, “The Customer is Always Right”. He owned two retail stores in Palm Springs and Redlands, CA. He was also involved in real estate in Palm Springs, CA and Costa Rica. He had a passion for the music and movie industry. Bill had the pleasure to work with Bob Hope, Frank Sinatra, Red Skeleton, Sammy Davis, Jr., Louis Prima and Keely Smith. In 1995, Bob Hope invited Bill to his home to share his Coast Guard experience at a World War II event that Hope was hosting. Bill owned Boutique Wine Distribution in southern CA. He was an author of a Wine Book pairing wine and food. Most memorably he provided a wine tasting for NAS San Diego with the Top Gun pilots. He distributed wellness and nutritional products as an NLP Practitioner. He moved from Malibu to San Diego and joined the Navy League. He was very proud to serve on the welcoming committee to welcome home ships and Marines after deployments. Bill participated on various speakers bureaus and military legislations.

Later in his life they moved to Florida where his life of service continued. In Sarasota, Bill participated in parades and manned the .50 cal on a World War II era Jeep. He was also a proud recipient of an Honor Flight mission. He was a member of VFW Post 12055, DAV 97, the Navy League, MOAA, and the Historical Aircraft Society. He was a proud Coast Guard veteran. Semper Paratus.


A graveside service with military honors provided by the United States Coast Guard is scheduled for Tuesday, September 18, 2018 at 10:00 am at Sarasota National Cemetery. All guests planning on attending should arrive at the cemetery at 9:30 am.

Special Acknowledgements

Bill had an amazing life. His favorite saying was, “Another Day in Paradise”. He will be forever missed by his wife, Barbara, and his loving family. In lieu of flowers, the family has asked that all memorial contributions be made to VFW Post 12055 and the Fisher House at Bay Pines VA Medical Center.

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  • Ted Smith says:

    Barbara and family, on behalf of the Sarasota County Veterans Commission, know of our sorrow, but gratitude for knowing Bill. It was also was an honor for me to escort him on his Honor Flight.