Wilfred Morris ROOF
January 22, 1927 – April 18, 2020
Wilfred Morris Roof, 93, of Villa Park, CA, joined Our Heavenly Father on April 18, 2020, passing away peacefully after a brief illness.
Wilfred – often called Bill by friends and family – was born on January 22, 1927, in Los Angeles, CA, to Carl and Catharine Roof. He grew up in South Gate, CA, and attended South Gate High School in the early 1940s, where he met Janet Williams. They were married on January 12, 1947. The high school sweethearts celebrated 73 years of marriage this past January!
Bill attended the University of Montana, and he also served in the United States Air Force. He was proud of his military service, and when he led the prayer at family gatherings, he always included a humble request to God to watch over our troops and see that they came home safely.
After leaving the Air Force, Bill went to work in the finance industry, embarking on a long and very successful business career. He formed Atlantic Financial with Hy Weiner in the mid 1950's, a business they ran well into the 1980's before selling the company. Bill owned three Volkswagen and Dodge dealerships in Orange County, and in March 1987 he started Mission Financial to provide financing to customers. Bill even appeared in television commercials for his dealerships! He was one of the founding members of the California Financial Services Association and served as Chairman from 1983-1984. Bill also served on the Law Committee for the American Financial Services Association, based in Washington, D.C. Mission Financial continues to flourish to this day, and incredibly, Bill continued to work in the office a few days a week, well into 2020. He truly loved what he did.
Bill epitomized the essence of what it was to be an entrepreneur – taking measured business risks and having the discipline to see them through. His business years were also marked by his generosity. He would support his employees through his companies, but also lend support to them personally when they asked. He saw the good side of everyone and always showed his caring and understanding ways. His employees loved and respected him.
His greatest influence, Bill said, was his father, who had a strong work ethic and inspired Bill to pursue a business career, but who also inspired him with religious virtues, to be a good man and provider, and to love his family.
He served proudly as a member of Shriners International, also inspired by his father to embrace the Masonic values that led Bill to help others. He and Janet were generous philanthropists, and their foundation supported the local performing arts as well as other health-related causes.
Bill had a great love for traveling and seeing the world, and he and Janet – often bringing the entire family – went to such amazing places as New Zealand, Spain, Tahiti and Egypt. His favorite destination, however, was Hawaii, where he and Janet visited over 70 times. Bill was also an avid and very good golfer, and he enjoyed the sport well into his 80's. He loved music and played the saxophone, and he would often entertain the family with the instrument he played back in the Air Force band. And of course, he was a diehard fan of the Los Angeles Dodgers – having had season tickets for well over 50 years – and the USC Trojans.
Bill was truly the patriarch – and the bedrock – of his loving family. He was kind and caring, loyal and selfless, and he always put his family and friends first. He did everything for them. Bill was humble and dependable, warm and generous. He was so unassuming, and he was a true gentleman. Bill was sharp as a tack and full of wit – right until his last days – and he loved to laugh and make others laugh. He provided a profound example of how to be a good person, how to care for others, and how to lead a life guided by love. He will be dearly and forever missed.
Wilfred was predeceased by his parents, his sister, Wanda, and his beloved daughter, Leslie. He is survived by the love of his life and wife, Janet, his beloved daughter, Karen and her husband Matt Neale, his daughter Leslie's husband William Turner, his brother Dwight and his wife Mary, his five grandchildren, Cristie and her husband Robert Flanigan, Richard Black and his wife Lori, Kari Black, Catharine and her husband Patrick Layton and Billy Turner, and his nine great-grandchildren, Strider, Sebastian, Kate, Paige, Benjamin, Asher, Graham, Brennan and Juliet.
A memorial service and celebration of Wilfred's life will be held later this summer, and he will be interred at Fairhaven Memorial Park in Santa Ana, CA. For more information on the memorial service, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Memorial Service at Waverley Chapel
Fairhaven Memorial Park and Mortuary
Wilfred Morris ROOF
May 1, 2020
Mr. Roof was an incredible person with the biggest heart. He was brilliant and funny. His work family misses him so much already.
April 29, 2020
Wonderful Man...loved his children and grandchildren very very much♥️♥️♥️