William J. MerrickSeptember 9, 1978 ~ September 29, 2017 (age 39)
Cadillac - William Justin Merrick, 39, of Cadillac, Michigan and the world passed away September 29th, 2017 at home. Billy was born on September 9th, 1978 in Cadillac to William Merrick and Roseanna (Phelps) Jurik.
Bill was a professional truck driver of the highest caliber, born with diesel fuel pumping through his viens, he drove all over the US and Iraq and could and did drive anything with wheels. He worked all over the U.S. and for six years in Iraq, most notably for KBR, Merl’s Towing, and in the oil fields in North Dakota. He was a blue collar everyman who set himself apart with his integrity, intelligence and fierce loyalty.
Bill’s heart beat for fast bikes, big trucks and exotic lands. He worked hard and played harder, traveling to Africa, Iraq, Thailand, Costa Rica, The Philippines and his favorite place in the world, Cambodia. One of his best memories was traveling to Cambodia with his father in 2010. He had an affinity for Ford Super Duty trucks even though it seems he spent more time working on them than driving them. The love of his life was his MV Agusta Brutale; he loved driving her down M-22 through the tunnel of trees and the huge sweeping curves.
As much as Bill loved to travel, he always looked forward to coming home to his Mom who he stayed extremely close with no matter how far he wandered. He tired of restaurant meals on the road and spoke often of how he couldn’t wait to be home to Mom’s home cooking. He loved and cherished his family and always made sure he stayed close with them. He shared a love of music and reading with his sister Whitney, she would often receive packages of books he sent her while he was in Iraq. She went to North Dakota to be with him after their father’s death and they made some great memories together. He had a great love for all of his nieces and nephews. He was always ready to go on another adventure with his brother Weston and his kids to try and show them how great the world is outside of the city. Shooting guns, two tracking, swimming in the river, he was by far the greatest uncle any kid could wish for. He was a great story teller with an amazing memory for detail and a hysterical sense of humor. He was tough on the outside and sweet, kind, and compassionate on the inside. He had an insatiable thirst for reading and carried a book with him wherever he went.
He was preceded in death by his father William Merrick, Grandparents William and Evelyn Merrick and Orson and Margene Phelps, brother in law Phillip Grames and Aunt Sandra Reichlin.
He is survived by his Mother and Stepfather Roseanna and Dale Jurik, Grandparents Jim and Arlene Jurik, Brother Weston (Karem) Merrick and their children Jaylyn, Domonic, Damian, Donovan, little Wes and Deon, and Sister Whitney Merrick-Grames (Eric Koenigsmann) and their children Caleb, Colton, Connor, Callan, August, Brianna, Hannah and Logan, many aunts, uncles and cousins including special Aunt Micky (Ray) Waid who he trusted, loved, and confided in throughout his life. He also leaves behind girlfriend, Liza Baker, and her daughter, Aly, and hundreds of dear friends.
A memorial celebration of his life will be held on Saturday, October 7th from 1 to 5 p.m. at his Dad’s house-6681 W. Division, Cadillac, MI 49601. Please bring a chair to sit in and a story to tell.
Contributions can be made to the family for help with expenses and distribution to wounded warriors.