ForeverMissed
A Celebration of Life will be held at 10:00 AM, Thursday, July 30 at Seymour Nazarene Church, 354 N Main St, Seymour, MO 65746.

William S Gatlos Sr was born in Philadelphia, PA on October 1, 1940.He had a love for firefighting at a young age. "To join the East Whiteland Fire Company in 1955, when the company acquired its first engine, you had to be 21 years old. Bill and his friends were at a gas station at Route 30 and Planebrook Road, when company members were burning off a field next to the Mehl & Latta Lumber Company (J&L). Winds swept the fire into the lumber yard as Bill and his friends ran toward the lumber yard to help. Fire company personnel welcomed their assistance as the fire was brought under control. At the next BOD meeting, BOD member Alan Blacklock suggested the age limit be lowered to 16 from Bill’s prompting. It was agreed by all. For all of us who joined the company at age 16, we have William Steven Gatlos to thank. Bill’s sister Betty was also a company member in the auxiliary, and brother Bob Gatlos was Assistant Fire Chief. Bill was on the scene at both major train derailments along Route 352 in 1959 and 1960 as well as countless numbers of fires, parades, and company functions. It was Bill and Bob Gatlos who painted “East Whiteland” on the backs of fire coats so everyone could be recognized at fire scenes. There was very little money and times were tough, so they made do with what they had. In June 1972 during Hurricane Agnes, at the time the worst natural disaster in the United States and still today the worst natural disaster in Pennsylvania, Bill took a crew on the 1963 Hahn engine to Phoenixville and Mont Clare to assist in rescue and pumping details. One week later, after returning, Bill organized a relief effort with East Whiteland and Berwyn Fire Companies to provide truck-loads of much needed supplies to the Pottsville and Wilkes Barre areas. In July 1972, my very first response was with Bill Gatlos to a report of a building fire at William Henry Apartments, just the two of us. Lucky for me it was an overheated television set, televisions had heated tubes back then. Bill and I responded on the 1963 Hahn to a well off dumpster fire against a building at the old Main Line Airport on Swedesford Road, where the fire was extinguished with a booster line. Bill Gatlos, Tommy Cockerham and myself were the original committee members to try to get EMS into the East Whiteland Fire Company. With nearly every door slammed in our faces, it finally came about several years later. Bill was able to visit with us when the new station was being built and again during our dedication ceremony. His heart was in this company as he often said, 1956 to 1974 were the best years of his life as a member of the East Whiteland Fire Company. As a firefighter and engineer, he was among the very best. In recent years while living in Missouri, Bill would often visit area fire departments, telling them how the real fire company back east in East Whiteland did the job just right. On a personal note, my brother Bill was drowning in a pond at Church Farm School when Bill Gatlos jumped in and saved his life, pulling him out to safety. Thank you Bill for all you gave us."- Randy Cockerham

William and his family moved to AZ in 1972.  He then moved to Missouri in 1991 where he lived until 2013.  He had a short few years back in AZ, then came back to Missouri in 2017 where he lived till the Lord called him home on July 15th, 2020.  He was surrounded by his children. He was preceded in death by his Parents Andrew and Anna Gatlos , three Brothers Andrew, Steve (Doreen), John and one sister Barbara Hull (Gatlos).He was also preceded in death by one of his best friends and fellow firefighters Tommy Cockerham, just two weeks prior. William is survived by his long time love Gloria Princo, of Phoenix, AZ. Three sister Margie Gatlos (Staten), Anna Mae Gatlos (Norcross) and Betty Gatlos (Whitaker), two brothers Michael Gatlos and Robert Gatlos, all of PA. He has one son William S Gatlos Jr. of Springfield, MO and three daughters, Stephanie (Michael) Johnson of Staunton IL., Jennifer Gatlos of Staunton IL. Rebecca Gatlos (Rickard Harris) of Springfield, MO. William later added two more daughters, whom he loved as his own, Shelly (Peter) Evtimov, of Az. and Sherry Bradshaw of Seymour, MO. He has 15 Grandsons Juan, Chris, Mat, Jonny, Joey, Caleb, Caden, Colston, Kaleb, Makoy, Paul, Ben, Dan, Oleksiy, and James. One Granddaughter, Kylynn whom he called “CC”. He also has 5 great-grandsons, 6 great-granddaughters and 1 TBA. Dad was a lifetime member of the East Whiteland Fire Dept. and always thought of them as his family. He retired from Jenkins Diesel in Springfield, MO. One of Dad’s favorite things was to make Indian Jewelry and pan for Gold. Dad had an amazing sense of humor and had a way of making people laugh. Even in his last hours he was rolling his eyes at us, and saying things to make us all laugh. He had a great heart, and when you ran into those who knew him, they always spoke of how sweet and funny he was. He was also as sarcastic as they come, and kept you on your toes. There was never a dull moment with him around, you were either laughing, or shocked at what he said. If you were around him long enough you heard him say, “is that your final answer?” Though our arms are empty, our hearts are full of the laughter and love we have to keep with us to remind us of the times we had until we are together again.  On Father's Day 2010 William accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as his Savior. Our hearts may be broken, but our memories will carry us till we are together again, we love you Dad.




Posted by Randy Cockerham on July 21, 2020
Bill, you were much more than a friend to Tommy and I, you were, are, and will always be our brother. The three of us had more than our share of fun and laughter, tough times as well, and we pulled the booster line off with you at the controls to put out many fires. I'm grateful you were here for the dedication of the new fire station in 2015, something that we always dreamed about. I know we will be joined again in a much better place. Thank you for the precious memories, love, and kindness to me. It was your guidance that gave me the confidence that helped me along to this very day. I love you Bill. See you on the other side.
Posted by William Gatlos Jr on July 21, 2020
In the last couple years you were in our lives a lot of things changed between us and it was beautiful. You told me you were proud of me. Hearing those words meant more to me than you will ever know.
I never dreamed that we would share a Philadelphia Eagles Super Bowl win that was one of my bucket list items.
The 1st game of next football season is gonna really be hard because I won't be able to call you after the game and talk about the eagles. That's OK though cause I know you, Tommy and the rest of the boys are chillin right now. I love you
Posted by Jennifer Gatlos on July 21, 2020
Daddy, you know I have never been the sappy type. Mom has said I was to much like you on this & many other ways. So I am not going to say good bye. That's for ones you don't in a way expect to see again. But I will say it the way I did every time I last saw you & expected to see you next time. "See you later Daddy, I love you very much❣❣" With a great big hug & a kiss on the cheek. Because I know I will see you again. I don't know when, but I will. Until then I will miss you oh so very much. I will always be Daddy's girl. See you later Daddy I love you so very much❣❣
Posted by Rebecca Rickard Harris on July 20, 2020
Dad.. I don't even know where to begin. I do know that my Sunday's now are going to be so different.. Sundays at dad's. The last few years have been a hard road, endless scans, chemo, and radiation. Boy... they will NEVER have another like you for sure!! You kept them laughing and probably shocked by your no filter personality while on the chemo floor, those around us always laughed and you put life in a place that was pretty hard to be in. You went into remission and beat cancer once. But, unfortunately your cancer was the bad kind. I am so thankful for the time we had been given after your first bout with it, I am thankful that we were given a little more time. Not everyone gets a little more time. You're not here with us to hug, laugh with, argue with, get frustrated with over that darn cell phone, mute those dumb tv commercials (then forget the tv is muted and watch tv with no sound). We will never stop sharing the stories of you shrinking clouds, or shooting fireworks at your neighbors house, having the police called and then shooting more fireworks off! SO many fun times! NO more sitting outside watching your grandkids play in front of your apartment. They loved coming to your place on Sundays to hang out, and go across to the church and play in the grass and have fun. Kylynn, your "CC," absolutely adored showing off for you on her bike, and her scooter. She loved kicking her ball and showing you just how far she could kick it. And you were so impressed by her. Your own little south paw.. just like her Papa. CC wont be able to go to Papas house and get her toys out of her toy closet... we will learn a new normal, I don't know how to even start to do that. Healing with come with time, but till then tears will fall, heartache will remain. You slipped away, and entered into God's care. I love you, and miss you Dad.
Posted by Stephanie Gatlos Johnson on July 20, 2020
Dad, I never understood how hard this time would be. I cant pick up the phone and call you and have you get mad cause you couldn't hear anything on "this dang phone" that always made me laugh. Now all we have are the memories of what life was. I hope you knew how much I truly loved you and I will miss you till the end.
Love Stef

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Recent Tributes
Posted by Randy Cockerham on July 21, 2020
Bill, you were much more than a friend to Tommy and I, you were, are, and will always be our brother. The three of us had more than our share of fun and laughter, tough times as well, and we pulled the booster line off with you at the controls to put out many fires. I'm grateful you were here for the dedication of the new fire station in 2015, something that we always dreamed about. I know we will be joined again in a much better place. Thank you for the precious memories, love, and kindness to me. It was your guidance that gave me the confidence that helped me along to this very day. I love you Bill. See you on the other side.
Posted by William Gatlos Jr on July 21, 2020
In the last couple years you were in our lives a lot of things changed between us and it was beautiful. You told me you were proud of me. Hearing those words meant more to me than you will ever know.
I never dreamed that we would share a Philadelphia Eagles Super Bowl win that was one of my bucket list items.
The 1st game of next football season is gonna really be hard because I won't be able to call you after the game and talk about the eagles. That's OK though cause I know you, Tommy and the rest of the boys are chillin right now. I love you
Posted by Jennifer Gatlos on July 21, 2020
Daddy, you know I have never been the sappy type. Mom has said I was to much like you on this & many other ways. So I am not going to say good bye. That's for ones you don't in a way expect to see again. But I will say it the way I did every time I last saw you & expected to see you next time. "See you later Daddy, I love you very much❣❣" With a great big hug & a kiss on the cheek. Because I know I will see you again. I don't know when, but I will. Until then I will miss you oh so very much. I will always be Daddy's girl. See you later Daddy I love you so very much❣❣
Recent stories

My Friend

Shared by Randy Cockerham on August 14, 2020
What a blessing it was to have known Bill Gatlos in my life. I had just joined the East Whiteland Fire Company at 16 years old, and really didn't know anything. My first fire call was with Bill on the 1963 Hahn Fire Engine (Photo attached), just the two of us. I was so excited and nervous, not sure what to do. Bill took all of that away and made me feel comfortable. It was just an overheated television set, not a real building fire, what a relief for me. With a lack of active members during week days, it was Bill and I for a lot of the calls. I learned from day one how to handle the hose line and nozzle and put the fire out, and I learned from the best. With a report of a dumpster fire up against a building at the old airport, Bill and I responded on the same engine as I pulled the line off and he operated the pump. Bill, Tommy and I were always together, either at the firehouse or out driving around somewhere, and always with laughter and fun. I drive by the old firehouse everyday many times and all those precious memories come back in my mind. How grateful I am to have had those wonderful times and all of the many precious memories that I think about every single day. Thank you Bill.

CB Radio Times

Shared by Stephanie Gatlos Johnson on July 29, 2020
When growing up in Maryvale Az. My Dad loved his CB Radios. He loved to tinker with it until till all hours of the night. The most fun for the people in the neighborhood was about 3:30 when he would fire that thing up and stomp all over everyones TV! You could hear kids yelling up and down the block! We could not watch or hear the TV all we could hear was my dad talking and it had lines all over. No one really knew who it was. I guess having a crystal in your CB and talking to people across the world was illegal. Outside the back door there was a pole that was in cement and he could spin it to get better reception. He knew right where he left it when he left it and went to bed. However, it me it was a pole that i could swing on and spin around and around on for hours! He would get so mad about that. His love for CB's had him join a CB Radio Club He called Himself Silver Mountain. We would get to go to Sambo's every week to the meetings and meet new people. One year we got to go to Missouri for a Jamboree and now all theses years later here we are!

Chemo Times

Shared by Rebecca Rickard Harris on July 22, 2020
After dad’s chemo appointments, we would go eat at Wendy’s.  Dad loved his jr bacon cheeseburgers with sriracha sauce on them.  Thankfully during a time when he had trouble eating, he still loved those!  The Tuesday he got out of the ER, July 7, the day before I brought him home to be with me he had his last... and boy did he enjoy it!!