Gregory Stuart Bill, 70, passed away at his home with his loving family at his side on Dec. 10, 2016, in Palmer, Alaska. Public wake (closed casket) will be held from2 p.m. - 5 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 15, 2016, at Janssen's Mat-Su Funeral Home, 6901 East Blue Lupine Drive in Palmer. Funeral Mass will be held at 10 a.m. on Friday, Dec. 16, 2016, at St. Michael's Catholic Church, 432 East Fireweed Avenue in Palmer. Fr. Jaime Mencias will be officiating. Greg will be buried at Ft. Richardson's National Cemetery with Military Honors at 1 p.m., following the service.Greg was born on Jan. 27, 1946, in Easton, Pa., to John and Florence (Schmickle) Bill. Greg graduated from Nazareth High School in Pennsylvania and soon after served his country in the United States Army
(1965-1967). He was a Vietnam Era Veteran, who served at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington D.C. During his service he was awarded the National Defense Service Medal.After serving his country, Greg moved to Anchorage, Alaska, in 1968. He later moved to Palmer in 1984. While in Alaska, Greg worked for the AL French Company (1968-1984) and eventually retired from the Iditarod Trail Committee (1984-2014). He was very proud to have been presented with the Herbie Nayokpuk Spirit of Iditarod Award in 2014.Greg attended and was an active member of St. Michael's Catholic Church in Palmer. He enjoyed family camping, kayaking, big game and duck hunting, photography and videography and, of course, practical jokes!The family wrote: ""In 1968, Greg drove to Alaska in a pickup to seek adventure and decided to stay. He loved everything about the state: its people, its beauty and its boundless opportunities. He was an avid supporter of the Iditarod Trail Race and proudly called his 42 years of service there 'one great ride.' But the joys of Iditarod were nothing compared to the joys and adventure of family life in Alaska. From camping trips at Byers Lake to ballet recitals, adventures in Hawaii to school concerts, he was an adoring and devoted husband, father and friend. He was always ready with a joke and his laugh and sense of humor will be remembered and sorely missed. He died at home surrounded by his wife, daughter and two cats.""Greg is survived by his loving wife, Annie Bill; his daughter, Meghan Bill; brother, Michael Bill of Rochester, N.Y.; brother, Robert Bill of Stroudsburg, Pa.; many brothers- and sisters-in-law; and numerous nieces and nephews.In lieu of flowers please make donations in memory of Greg to: Southwest Indian Foundation (Education) at www.southwestindian.com/foundation
; or Brother Francis Shelter in Anchorage.