William R. 'Billy' MurtoWilliam R. "Billy" Murto, 65, cherished husband, father, grandfather and brother, passed away on Saturday, Aug. 3, 2013, in St. Luke's Hospice, Duluth, Minn., after complications made home hospice impossible any longer, after a 11-month battle with pancreatic cancer.
William R. "Billy" Murto, 65, cherished husband, father, grandfather and brother, passed away on Saturday, Aug. 3, 2013, in St. Luke's Hospice, Duluth, Minn., after complications made home hospice impossible any longer, after a 11-month battle with pancreatic cancer. Billy faced this battle with the courage and quiet nature for which he is known and admired. He left this world the same way he lived his life, quietly after all the crowds left. Billy was a lifelong Esko, Minn., resident and spent almost all his life at the family farm house in which he was raised. Billy could be found on the sidelines of all of Anna's soccer games and most all of her basketball games.
Billy graduated from Esko High School in 1966. He attended Salter Vocational School and Duluth Vo-Tech. He married Patty Hollingsworth on Aug. 16, 1969. Billy retired from Minnesota Power after 36 years and took up his second career of caring for his mother and raising his granddaughter.
When he wasn’t enjoying his grandfather role, Billy enjoyed skeet shooting on the River Inn team, restoring Chevrolets, mowing the lawn, his man cave and attending swap meets with his friends Joe Burbul and Larry Watczak. Billy was a member of St. Matthew's Lutheran Church and IBEW Local 31 and was a union steward for many years. Billy was also a scout leader when the boys were young.
Billy was preceded in death by his parents, Uuno and Gloria Murto, and his mother- and father-in-law, Red and Ruby Hollingsworth.
Billy is survived by his high school sweetheart and loving wife of 44 years, Patty; sons, Matthew, Nathan (Tara) and Joshua Murto, all of Esko; granddaughter, Arianna Murto; grandsons, Ryan and Tyler Bolen and Nick Johnson; sister, Mary Anne (David) Lee of Cloquet; brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, Carol (John) Dalrymple of Charleston, S.C., Dale Hollingsworth of Esko, Lee (Carla) Hollingsworth of Proctor, Minn., and Jill (Roger) Lofald of Duluth; nieces, Keely Lofald, Jana (Craig) Hollingsworth Gustafson, Christy (Aaron) Strom, Erin (Bart) Berglund and Kelli Lee; nephews, Erik Lofald, John (Kara) Dalrymple and Mike (Kim) Dalrymple; and many friends.
Billy was a big man with a big heart and a quiet soul who never had an unkind word to say about anybody.
The family thanks Billy's amazing oncologist, Dr. Gouelli, and his nurse, Terry; the infusion team at St. Luke’s oncology, Keith, Kitty and Beth on 2 West; and Margy and Pat of St. Luke’s Hospice.
Visitation will be held Tuesday, Aug. 6, from 6-8 p.m. in Atkins-Northland Funeral Home, 801 14th St., Cloquet. Visitation will continue Wednesday, Aug. 7, from 1 p.m. until the 2 p.m. funeral service in St. Matthew's Lutheran Church in Esko. Burial will be in St. Matthew's Cemetery. Refreshments will follow in the Family Life Center at the church. The family asks that we honor Billy by wearing casual attire and bring your favorite memory of Billy.
To sign the guest book and offer an online tribute, see www.atkinsnorthlandfuneralhome.com.
August 8, 2013 ~ Pine Journal, Cloquet, Minn.