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William James Dorran, 66, formerly of Hermiston, died October 15, 2023 in San Rafael, California. Born November 29, 1956 in Walla Walla, Washington to Russell and Delia (Williams) Dorran, William (Bill) was the middle child of a large family. The only blond in the bunch, and tall, he was a standout even at awkward times, such as his turn from amongst the brothers to play family Santa.
There will be a rosary at 2 pm, followed by a funeral mass at 2:30 pm, at Our Lady of Angels Catholic Church in Hermiston on Friday, October 27, 2023. Graveside burial service will be at Olney Cemetery in Pendleton at 11 am, Saturday, October 28, 2023 where he will be buried next to his grandfather, William James Dorran. Burns Mortuary of Hermiston is in charge of arrangements.
Bill graduated from Hermiston High School in 1975 where he was a steadfast presence in the band program on the drums, even squeezing in some drum shenanigans in Eugene after proceeding to the University of Oregon and graduating with bachelors degrees in communications and business. Although always remaining a loyal Duck, Bill went on to attend the University of Texas at Austin to earn an MBA.
Singular-minded and focused when he had an entrepreneurial idea, Bill started as a young man with his business projects and one of his first was practical yet flashy. He refurbished an MG Midget sports car and later drove it to Texas with the advice to be polite to any state troopers who might stop him, since his long blond hair and ‘Eugene look’ might give pause. The story went that yes, he was both stopped and was polite. Texas went on to figure prominently in Bill’s life as he married a Texan, Kathryn Scott, in 1985, and divorced in 2014.
Living in both Texas and California, Bill combined his communications savvy and his business skills to seize the opportunity being presented at the time for satellite and cell phone technology. He worked with companies Viacom and Pegasus before creating two of his own, DialTone Texas and Range Global, and remained at the forefront of the industry in both states.
While living in various locations, Bill was able to help with home remodeling projects and made sure that the photo-spread results always included U of O green and gold somewhere or a Duck-themed item strategically placed. A few years ago, Bill hosted family at his San Rafael home and folks were able to see some of the remodeling creativity, a highlight being automatic draw fabric garage ‘curtains’. In the garage would be one or two Tesla vehicles, as Bill had become a proponent of the electric car model. And, while his father Russ was working for Hermiston Energy Services, Bill gifted him a Tesla so he would be able to experience one as well.
The mountains and nature were important to Bill, and he treasured time spent outdoors both as a youth and as an adult whenever he could. Whether it was on a picnic blanket with his Grandma Helen, on a Boy Scout hike, or gathering family for a recent Wallowa Lake trip, Bill was ready to be outside.
Bill is preceded in death by parents Russell and Delia, and considered sister, Inez Griffels.
He is survived by brothers David Dorran, Daniel Dorran (Terri), and R.B. Dorran (Kris) of Hermiston; Robert Dorran (Kathie) of Maryville, Tennessee; sister Delia Fields (Ray) of Hermiston; Steve Griffels of Hillsboro, and nieces and nephews Amber Dorran, D.J Dorran, Cutter Dorran, Dauson Dorran, Brandi Wahler, Mitch Colvin, Henry Dorran, Grayson Wallis, and Lily Fields.
Memorial remembrances may be made to any local humane society; or to the Helix Advancement Partnership Network (HAPN), PO Box 374, Helix, OR 97835.
Recitation of the Holy Rosary will be held on Friday, October 27, 2023 at 2:00 P.M. at Our Lady of Angels Catholic Church, followed by Mass of Christian Burial at 2:30 P.M..
A family burial will be held at Olney Cemetery in Pendleton, Oregon.
Please share memories of Bill with his family at burnsmortuaryhermiston.com
Burns Mortuary of Hermiston, Oregon is in care of arrangements.