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William Brattain


November 28, 2019

-Submitted photo

William G. Brattain

William Gilmore Brattain

April 3, 1943-November 17, 2019

William "Bill" Gilmore Brattain, 76, passed away in his sleep, at his home in Portland, Ore., on November 17, 2019.

Bill was born to Walther H. and Keren (Gilmore) Brattain in New York City on April 3, 1943.

Son of Nobel Prize-winning physicist Walter H. Brattain and chemist Keren (Gilmore) Brattain, Bill had a natural gift for math and science. He earned bachelor's degrees in mathematics at Carleton College and microbiology at the University of Washington. He created interlocking wooden puzzles and taught science at a private school. Bill shared his father's interest in "tinkering" with mechanical devices to understand how they worked.

His deepest impulse was service to others. He worked for many years as a chef and manager in a nursing facility. Later, he served as a nurses' aide at a memory care facility. In retirement, he volunteered at a shelter for homeless families. He had a knack for relating to the elderly, whose perspectives he valued. Bill was known for his easygoing temperament, sense of humor, and inclusiveness. Nobody was beneath him: he treated all with respect.

Bill loved classical music. One of his favorites was Dvorak's Symphony No. 9 in E minor, "From the New World." He delighted in card games, especially bridge, which gave him an opportunity to make new friends. He also enjoyed taking walks, reading mystery novels, and trying new restaurants.

Family was important to Bill and loved to connect with his extended family. He was the great grandson of John and Marie Houser, the original owners of the Pataha Flour Mill.

Bill was preceded in death by Evelyn (Ehrichs) Brattain, his dear wife of 33 years, in 2007.

He is survived by his daughter Karen, son Ross, his brother Webb, sister Debi, many nieces, nephews, cousins, and in-laws.

A private ceremony will be held at the Pomeroy City Cemetery in Pomeroy, Wash. to inter his ashes beside his father on November 27, 2091.

Bill had a big heart. His greatest desire was to help people. Anyone wishing to honor him can donate to Cure Alzheimer's Fund, https://curealz.org.


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