William John Stieren, 93, of Lakeland died peacefully on Saturday, October 8, 2022. Bill was born in Springfield, IL on March 29, 1929.

Bill grew up as an only child, of William A. and Anne Stieren in Springfield, IL. He spent his childhood playing sports and riding bikes with neighborhood friends and starting work at a young age driving a truck and delivering blocks of ice to city residents.

He graduated from high school early to join the Marine Corps. His high school year book has his picture in his Marine Corps uniform with the caption: “We are glad Bill could be one of our graduates even though he was serving his country.” Bill earned the victory medal for WWII for his service.

After his honorable discharge, he returned to Springfield to work as a machinist for Cave Auto Parts. It was during this time that he met Velda, who was to become his wife of 67 years. Bill spent most of his career working as a mail carrier for the USPS in Springfield. Over the years he carried many areas of the city and delivered mail to many homes and commercial establishments. He hardly went anywhere without seeing someone he knew.

He very much loved his family. He could fix anything and his sons broke plenty. He was always there for the boys. He frequently became the player to round out the sides in neighborhood games of football, basketball and baseball. He was always the best player on the field, even when the boys became older.

When not carrying mail, or working in his yard, you could find him at the local park watching the men’s fast pitch softball or in the winter months he was often seen at Springfield High School basketball games.

After retiring from the post office, he wintered in Lake Wales, Florida for many years before moving to Lakeland as an all year resident in 2016. He never left his roots in Springfield and never wavered on his loyalty to the St. Louis Cardinals. He enjoyed living close to his grandchildren and great grandchildren.

Bill was also a man of great faith and relied on his close relationship with Jesus Christ to provide strength, especially through the last few months of his life. He has now completed his goal to be in Heaven with Jesus, his wife, and several family members and friends. He fought the good fight and has finished the race.

Bill was preceded in death by his wife, Velda and his daughter-in-law, Joanne. He is survived by his sons, Bill (Ginny) and John Stieren; grandchildren, David (Sandy), Richard (Cindy) and Katrina (Diddy) Stieren; great grandchildren, Suzanna Wright, Charlie, Haley, Annslee and Waylon Stieren.

Services will be at Gentry- Morrison Southside Chapel in Lakeland, Florida. Visitation will be from 10 to 11 a.m., with the service starting at 11 a.m. on Friday, October 14, 2022. Condolences may be sent to the family at Gentry-Morrison Funeral Homes.

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