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William Cordis, Sr.

ST. IGNATIUS — William G. (Bill) Cordis, Sr. went to be with his Lord and Savior on Thursday, May 9, 2024. Bill passed away peacefully with his loving family by his side. 

Bill was born on Oct. 6, 1944, to George (Cap) and Jean Cordis in Missoula. He attended school in St. Ignatius, graduating from Mission High School in 1963 and was a proud lifelong Mission Bulldog. In later years he enjoyed watching his grandchildren wear his old uniform numbers proudly in football and basketball. Didn’t matter what sport or activity his grandkids played or were involved in; there he was … sitting in the stands cheering them on and beaming with pride.

After graduation Bill married Shirley Mikkelsen; they built their home in Ronan. The couple raised three children: Shelley, Brenda and William G. Cordis, Jr (Billy). Bill began his career for Lake County Road Department in 1970 and retired after 44 years in 2011. While working for the road department Bill also volunteered for the Ronan Fire Department and Ambulance Service - KIC415 – radio # 9. Bill was a long-time standing city council member in Ronan, and he also served as Ronan’s Mayor for a few years before moving back to St. Ignatius to start a small cattle operation. 

Bill coached youth baseball for many years with Gene Mays and they always had winning teams. While sports were a big part of his life, Bill’s passion was hunting. Bill was an avid outdoors man and loved his Mission Mountains. As a young boy Bill roamed the family homestead at McDonald Lake. He wore moccasins and rode his horse bareback fishing, hiking, and having grand adventures in his pristine timbered backyard. Bill also loved the Bob Marshall Wilderness, and he enjoyed multiple pack trips with lifelong friend Mick Cheff. Bill, his brother Gary and son Billy, adventured to Prince George, British Columbia, Canada, for a moose hunting adventure. Bill’s most treasured hunting memories were the times spent with son Billy, son-in-law Boyd and his grandkids in the Lima Peaks south of Dillon. Multiple friendships were made during these amazing excursions during hunting season. 

Bill was an amazing storyteller often captivating his great-grandkids’ attention with his animated antics filled with fantastic lore that often ended with him bellowing out songs that rhymed with their names. The whimsy and love of being a Papa always came out when the grands or great- grands came to visit … didn’t matter how old they had gotten, Papa Bill was always up to “play” whatever game they wanted - including eating make-believe “sushi!” (Which he’d never eaten in his life) - but to him, with the grands, make-believe sushi was the most delicious thing he’d ever eaten! He was literally the world’s greatest Papa.

Bill was devout man of God, a loving husband, father, papa, and a caring uncle. He had a servant’s heart and always gave of himself to help others. He was incredibly outgoing, and he never knew a stranger; he will be deeply missed by his loving family - but we all know that with his passing, Heaven gained the most amazing mountain man angel.

Bill is preceded in death by his parents, Cap and Jean Cordis; brother, Gary Cordis; granddaughter, Katie Cordis; grandson, Cody Cordis; great-granddaughter, Harlee Frame; mother-in-law, Eleanor Mikkelsen; father-in-law, Jens Mikkelsen; brother-in-law, Larry Sherman; and sister-in-law, Mary Lou LaDue. 

He is survived by his wife, Shirley; son, Billy Cordis; daughter, Shelley Cordis (Boyd) Frame; and daughter, Brenda (Michael) Kobilansky; grandkids Shantell (Bob) Martin, Tyrell Frame, Chance (Catie) Frame, Levi (Ty) Frame, Skyler Frame, Justin Bilile, Breanna Bilile (Elliott Adams), Jordan Bilile (TJ Payne), Cole Cordis; and great-grandkids Kendalyn, Cooper, Kaydance and Cinch Martin, Emery Frame, Cassidy and Rusty Frame, Kash Holland, Briell Adams, Adilyn Payne, and Greyson Bilile; sister, Sharon (David) Todd of Missoula; and sister-in-law, Janie (Don) Bauer; and numerous nieces, nephews, and extended family.

Services have taken place. Messages of condolences may be shared with the family online at: 

Arrangements are under the care of The Lake Funeral Home and Crematory.


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