Obituary: Bill Chindlund

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Bill Chindlund passed away suddenly and unexpectedly on Friday morning, Sept. 7, while on his daily walk on May Valley Road. He was 67. Cause of death is still being determined.

Bill moved to Idyllwild with his wife, Charlene, in May 2004, and had explored most of the trails in the local mountains. A lover of the wilderness, he had been rereading all his Edward Abbey books prior to his death. “Abbey’s Road” was at his bedside.

Born and raised in west central Minnesota, he attended Litchfield High School with classmates who would become life-long friends. From 1960-1962, he served in the U.S. Navy. A graduate of the University of Minnesota with a degree in theater arts, he spent the majority of his career working in the entertainment business. He was most proud of his affiliation with Walt Disney Imagineering in Show Production from which he retired in 2001. Various projects he worked on were Toon Town, Disney’s California Adventure, and similar installations in Orlando, Paris, and Tokyo. He was a gifted designer, builder, and teacher with an artist’s eye.

Bill was known for his love of life, his quirky sense of humor, and his witty play on words. After attending a writing workshop in the spring, he had recently tapped into an extraordinary talent for writing. A member of AA for almost 29 years, he lived his life one day at a time and over the years had made a difference in the lives of others from many diverse walks of life.

He is survived by his wife of 26 years, Charlene; brother and sister, Carroll (Leone) and Judy (Vic); daughter and son, Lisa (Mike) and Chris; step-son and step-daughter, Larry (Dee) and Gillien; aunt, Bonnie; and many cousins, nieces and nephews, grand-nieces and nephews, and great grand-nieces and nephews too numerous to list.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, Oct. 13, at 2 p.m. at the Idyllwild Nature Center with which he was affiliated. Gifts in memory may be sent to the Friends of the San Jacinto Mountain County Parks (FSJMCP), P.O. Box 1522, Idyllwild, CA 92549.

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