William “Bill” Draper Jones

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Bill Jones passed away Friday morning, May 13, 2022 surrounded by his family. Bill was born December 30, 1934 in SLC, Utah to William Albert Jones Jr. and Olive “Colleen” Draper Jones. He married Mary Katheryn Muhlestein in the SLC Temple on June 15, 1960.

Bill grew up in SLC, UT for much of his young life, however, his family moved to Boise during his high school years. Bill graduated from Boise High in 1952, going on to attend BYU prior to serving an LDS mission to the Navajo Reservation. Upon returning from his mission, Bill returned to BYU, where he met and eventually married his “sweetie” Mary K. Muhlestein.

Bill showed his dedication to the people he loved by doing everything he could to help them. This was evident when, after being accepted to Georgetown Medical School, he declined so that he could stay in Salt Lake City to help his mother after the sudden passing of his father.

As his family grew to 7 children, Bill supported them by dedicating his time to purchasing and remodeling multiple rental properties to ensure that his family would be taken care of.

Bill’s dedication extended to his service of others. He worked for the State of Utah for over 30 years, first with the Building Board, eventually retiring as Director of Facilities Planning in 1998. Over the years he served in various bishoprics, three for the University of Utah student ward, as well as bishop in the Monument Park 9th ward.

Bill & Mary K. loved spending time with their family at dinners, game nights, or family trips. They were always trying to find various ways to ensure their kids, grandkids and themselves could continue to spend time together. They purchased multiple timeshares to utilize for large, frequent family trips, and more recently purchased a large cabin for the family.

Not only did Bill show his dedication to those he loved, he clearly found objects he loved just as much. Living by the motto “If one is good, more must be better.” He developed a love for VW’s, particularly VW beetles (1967 or older preferred). He eventually amassed a “collection” of VW cars and parts to rival any junkyard. His favorite car was his 1967 baby blue convertible bug. He preferred VW’s so much, he even drove and used a VW Vanagon instead of a truck for hauling and storing tools and supplies during his time renovating properties. He also amassed “collections” of many other objects – Hoover vacuums, Toro reel mowers, clothes, tools, and almost anything he could find for a “good deal”.

Bill loved traveling and motorcycles, and periodically combined them when Mary K. and himself would take motorcycle trips with Mary K.’s sister and brother-in-law, Ilene and Bill Lystrup. Along his travels Bill gladly took on the nickname of “Wiremu” (William in Maori).

Bill loved to repeat his main motto often “I Love People, I Love Life.” He believed that people are wonderful and interesting. One of his favorite things to do was meeting and talking to people from all different walks of life, never one to shy away from saying “hello”, or trying to strike up a conversation. He would always chat with the servers at his favorite restaurants, who came to know him and were always happy to see him.

Bill was a man of routines and habits. He loved to drive around town, trying to spot deer on his “deer run”, check on his rental properties or follow the progress of construction projects. Bill’s routines and habits were something of joy (and teasing) for those around him. From eating ice cream (one scoop of each flavor) to pumpkin cookies and Root Beer daily, the same meals at his favorite restaurants, and even his creation of his own “Wiremu mix” candy.

Bill always found the “love of life” in the simple things around him. During his final years at Sunrise in Holladay, he could be found sitting next to the jukebox, singing along to the songs, bringing smiles to everyone. During Covid, when his facility was in lock down, he would look out his apartment window and talk about the beauty of the sky, the clouds, the mountains or commenting on how wonderful people were. It’s no wonder the staff at Sunrise say he will be greatly missed.

Bill is survived by his wife Mary K; children Kathryn (Dave) Persch, Elizabeth (Lorraine) Jones, Jennifer Hicks, Kristen (Jason & 1st husband Travis) Powell, David Jones, Steven (Jen) Jones, Carolyn (Gary) Potter, as well as numerous grandchildren.

Preceded in death by his parents, sister (Marilyn Jones), step-father (Wayne Brewer), and son-in-law (Dale Hicks).

Bill’s family wishes to express our sincere gratitude to ALL the staff at Sunrise in Holladay for their loving care over his last four years as his dementia progressed. We also wanted to give thanks to Valerie, Jennifer, and the other staff at Encompass Home Health & Hospice for their care in his final months.

Services will be held Friday, May 20th at Wasatch Lawn Memorial Park, 3401 S. Highland Dr. SLC, UT 84106. A Viewing will be held from 9:30-10:30am, with the funeral service at 11am.

In Lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the charity of your choice.

For Zoom link for funeral service please look here https://www.dignitymemorial.com/obituaries/salt-lake-city-ut/william-jones-10753569

Life Story Info

Post Date

May 17, 2022

Personal Info



Worked For

  • State of Utah - Building Board and Director of Facilities Planning


  • Bachelor's
    Brigham Young University
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NEXT Thelma Colene Oviatt Thelma Colene Oviatt


I am so sorry for your loss. Dave you spoke so highly of your dad. Love you.

Jerri McTaggart , Carlsbad , NM, US May 18, 2022


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  • 2020
  • May 19, 2022

    Mary K. and Family: I have the fondest of memories and warmest of feelings about serving with Bill in a student ward bishopric in the late 1960's. I send my love and condolences to you. Sincerely, Marlin Jensen