William J. Jones
William (Bill) Joseph Jones, a longtime resident of Montecito who enjoyed his family, fishing, and sailing, passed away peacefully in his sleep at age 89.
Bill is remembered for his wide warm smile, strong core values, sense of humor, and passion for helping others. Anyone who dealt with him knew that his handshake was a contract.
Bill was born in Altadena, CA, to Helen Rund Jones, of Illinois, and William Ellis Jones, of Wales. Bill played football at St. Francis High School in La Canada Flintridge and earned Eagle Scout honors. When he was 19, Bill met Elizabeth Mary Henry of Glendale, CA. They fell in love and married.
Bill started working in 1959 at Excel-Mineral Company in Vernon, CA, which produced and marketed industrial absorbents (Quik-Sorb) as well as cat litter (Jonny Cat). As sales grew, he was named sales manager, then Vice President, then Senior Vice President of Sales. Bill served on the Excel board of directors and as president of the Sorptive Minerals Institute as well as the Sanitary Supply Association of Southern California, both trade organizations, for many years.
When he wasn’t working, Bill was with his wife and six children, often taking camping trips that included fishing. After moving to Montecito in 1974, the family became involved in the Santa Barbara Sea Shell Association and the Santa Barbara Sailing Club.
Bill is survived by his wife, Beth, and their children: Douglas Jones and John McGuinness; Kathy Jones and Mark Norum; Brian Jones; Sharon Jones and Stephen Simpson; Marie Jones Rembert and Alex Rembert; and Diane Jones. He is also survived by his brothers, Jack and David Jones, and six grandchildren: Davis and Cailey Rembert, Zia and Lucca Simpson, and Carter and Marisa Jones.
A funeral mass is planned for noon on Saturday, July 16 at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Church in Montecito. A visitation is planned from 3 to 5 pm, Friday, July 15, at Welch-Ryce-Haider Funeral Chapel in Santa Barbara. Hawaiian shirts are encouraged.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests a donation to Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church, 1300 East Valley Road, Santa Barbara, CA 93108, or VNA Serenity House (go to VNA Health’s donation page and direct a gift to go to Serenity House).