Born to William Henry Iffert and Lula Iffert in Pleyto, California, Bill grew up in Southern California working with his father in construction, learning skills he used on projects throughout his life. He particularly remembered the day when the family went to the bank and a sign said,
“ Bank Closed”. The depression hit the family hard, but they got by. Bill joined the Civilian Conservation Corps and worked on building trails in the Sierras.
Back in Los Angeles area, when Bill met Betty Ruth Mullin he thought, “She’s the one for me,” and soon they married. He often said, “She didn’t walk, she danced.” They sang and danced together for about 63 years. Together they raised four children.
In the second World War, Bill served in the Navy Seabees, and was assigned to New Caledonia in the South Pacific to build landing fields for military aircraft. He fondly recalled comrades from countries such as New Zealand who would pass the time with games, stories and songs.
After he got his civil engineering degree from Cornell University, he worked for thirty-two years with the Los Angeles County Flood control district where he drew maps of landforms and he pioneered the early aerial photography needed for dam construction and flood control. Retirement led to travel and new adventures.
Bill and Betty lived in Brookings, Oregon, Joshua Tree, and then Ripon. He built and flew remote control airplanes and he loved a project. He often asked, “What do you want me to do?” He helped build two new homes. He climbed ladders, framed structures, fixed anything, mowed and cared for citrus trees.
One of five children, he was preceded in death by sisters Helen and Mary, brother Paul, son Robert, and his wife Betty Ruth Iffert.
He is survived by sister Elizabeth Temple, special friend Pricilla Wright and best buddy Bill Sikkma. He is also survived by three children, Theresa Iffert, William Philip Iffert and Patricia Schroeder, and four grandchildren, Lillian Elsholz, Lynn Schroeder, Andrew Schroeder and Barbara Martinez. “Stretch” the dog really misses his morning snacks, whining at the door to visit.
He wrote an article published in The Pasadena Star News in 1997, titled “How Incredible This Land is We Call America.” His optimism, gratitude and patriotism are sorely missed.
Manteca (Calif.) Bulletin
Saturday, February 3, 2018