RIP "Uncle Bill" Mertz,on your final Grand Trip
Just found out that Bill Mertz,of Grand Junction,Colo passed at his home due to heart attack.He was a familiar face on all the major rivers of the West,but especially had a soft spot in his heart for the "hometown" run of Westwater,the Grand,and the Salmon.
He was a volunteer Ranger for many years at Westwater.He bought his beautiful,bright yellow 19' Hyside bucket boat new in 1993,and it would be a fixture on all the western rivers for the next 20 years,until the trip mileage turned the exterior snow white in color---still holds air for days to this day---a ready-to-go-anytime tribute to Bills love of water.
You always knew Bill would be an asset on any trip---his hard work ethic,laughter,logic,and stories will be sorely missed.I hope other folks will have clearer photos of him(he's sitting on the white pad,below Skull),and other stories to share---this is the last trip i had the privilege to take with him on his beloved Westwater 8/14/11.
A service will be held for him at Mesa Funeral Services 2825 North Ave Grand Junction,Colo---(970)-243-9999,at 6pm,on Sunday Jan 13th,2013.
If you cant attend,please share your "Uncle/Mr. Bill" stories/photos here,and let the family know what he meant in the river community.