Family, friends honor late man with benefit

Local News


It was a Wichita Falls man’s dying wish to visit the state he was born in one more time, and although time ran out before that wish could be fulfilled, friends and family are going on with the fundraising they started before his death.

It is a bittersweet ending to the effort, but they still feel it is one that should be completed.

“We wish he were still here today, we still feel like he was gone too soon,” Bill’s son-in-law Dalton Hunter said.

Bill’s wife Gwen Mills and their son-in-law recently lost someone close to their hearts: husband and father-in-law Bill Mills.

“He loved his family, he was just a hard worker and a good man,” Gwen Mills said.

Two years ago Mills, was diagnosed with lung cancer, following chemo and radiation he was in the clear for a while until a check up later revealed he had cancer in his liver.

It was then that those who knew and loved him began to plan a celebration and benefit for Mills to raise funds for expenses and his final wish, a trip to his birthplace in Rhode Island.

“He had a daughter there, he had a brother there, he wanted to visit the orphanage, there was just something he wanted to do, like visit friends and family so that really meant a lot to him,” Gwen Mills said.

While Mills will not be there for the celebration, his family and close friends are inviting the community to attend his benefit filled with music, food and stories of who he was.

“I met Bill before he passed and he was such a sweet genuine soul and you could see the genuine love in his eyes and what he did for the community over the last 20, 30 years, so yes he did touch my heart string with me and felt it was necessary for us to take care of him,” Stick’s Place owner Kim Stevens said.

Stevens, Hunter and Gwen Mills hope community members will gather around this family at Stick’s Place Saturday and give what they can to someone so many loved.

The proceeds from this benefit will be going to helping Mills’ family with expenses but they have also decided to donate 10 percent of the proceeds to Hospice of Wichita Falls in his name to say thanks for all they did for him.

The event kicks off Saturday at Stick’s Place at with a motorcycle fun run, registration is at 9 am.

There will be $10 barbecue plates and live music.

For more details, follow this link.

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