william mcmillan
William “Mac” McMillan, 90, of Weirton died Monday, April 13, 2009 in the Weirton Medical Center. His loving daughter was at his side. Born at Pierce, WV, Tucker County, September 23, 1918, he was the son of the late George Baird and Bessie Eva Rice McMillan. Best known as Bill or Mac and later Chief, he moved to Wellsburg, WV at the age of seven. Bill enrolled in Washington Elementary School and then, at the age of sixteen, served in the Civilian Conservation Core in McKee, KY. He graduated from Wellsburg High School in 1937 where he played right guard in football. After graduation Bill worked for Grotz Mold & Machine Co., where he received his First Class Machinist Certificate. In 1938, Bill met the love of his life, Nellie Ralich, and shortly after joining the US Navy in July of 1942, the couple was married on August 19, 1942. While serving on the USS Pasadena in 1945, Bill received word that his son William George was born on November 25, 1944. In 1945 Chief returned home and returned to work for Grotz Mold & Machine. He served in the U.S. Naval Reserves until October of 1978. In 1946, Bill and Nellie’s second child was stillborn, and in 1955, the couple was blessed with their third child, Deborah Carol. On March 20, 1950, Bill started working for the Weirton Steel Company as a machinist in the Strip Steel Electric Department, where he worked for nearly 34 years before his retirement on January 31, 1984. Bill enjoyed traveling with his family, especially camping in the family’s motor home. Mac also was known to participate in the area’s 5 and 10 K fitness events. He was a member of the Cove Presbyterian Church, Weirton Steel 25 Year Club, Reserve Officer’s Club, American Legion Post 10, Moose 688 and a Life Member of the VFW 2716. Bill was preceded in death by his parents, a daughter, two brothers, George and Warren Harding “Dink” McMillan, and his wife Nellie Ralich McMillan on April 16, 2004. He will be sadly missed by his son William George and Laura J. McMillan of North Hills, CA; daughter, Deborah C. and Michael L. Fisher of Cochranton, PA; a brother, Charles Eugene McMillan of Dresher, PA; seven grandchildren, Bethany, Natalie, Andrew, Jonathan, Katelin, Brittany, and Grace. Visitation will be Friday, April 17, 2009 from 2-6 PM at the Greco-Hertnick Funeral Home, 3219 Main Street, Weirton, where funeral services will be conducted 11 AM Saturday. Reverend Ed Rudiger and Chaplain Charles E. McMillan will officiate. Entombment will follow at the Chapel Hill Memorial Gardens, Weirton where Military Services will be conducted by the American Legion Firing Squad. Memorial contributions may be made to the Cove Presbyterian Church or the World War II Memorial. Funeral Home: Greco Hertnick Funeral Home 3219 Main Street Weirton, WV US 26062

Memories Timeline


  1. There was not a better man than Uncle Bill. He was the epitome of a devoted husband and loving father. Aunt Nellie and Uncle Bill were the glue that kept the Ralich family together. You will be greatly missed and will always have a special place in our hearts!

  2. I will miss Uncle Bill, one of the most kind and compassionate man I’ve known. He was always there to help out those in need and always thought of others before himself. I’ll remember the holidays spent with the family as the best times. I loved hearing his stories about when the boys (his brothers and he) were young and their antics. He will never be forgotten, but will always be in our hearts.

  3. For those of you who visit our site…my Dad always taught me to be an individual. In his recent weakest moments, it continued to be his strength that I could lean on to support him in the fashion he earned and deserved. He taught me very well. We vacationed, we laughed heartily and we loved each other deeply and unconditionally. I know he touched so very many hearts. In his spirit, and on his behalf, be strong and remember all the good times. Anchors Aweigh!

  4. Uncle Bill was an Uncle, a Sailor and a Friend. He was somebody you could talk to and he would listen. John and i camped with him and Aunt Nellie many times and they were always there when our band played music at the camp. I will never forget this fine gentleman. Anchors Aweigh “Ace”.

  5. To me he was Uncle Bill and a second father–to Tom he was Chief–they had the navy amongst other things in common. Thanks for everything you and Aunt Nellie have ever done for us. Too many to list. We love you, Now you are sailing on calm seas—- Anchors Aweigh Uncle Bill, We will all miss you. Love Bozie and Tom

  6. Sorry for your loss; Shari Schultz, Cindy McClellan, Bill Reinhardt, Samantha Wasson, Liz White, Rex Midkiff (I enjoyed your father when he came to LEAP and his sense of humor), Richard Reinhart,and BethAnn Rodgers.

  7. Dear Friends, Good memories of good friends help to heal the heart. As we celebrated Jesus Resurrection on Easter Sunday; today we celebrate Bill and Nellie together once again in Heaven. We had many good years in Weirton and always enjoyed our time with your family. Our thoughts and our prayers will be with you as you remember your Dad. Take Care–Rev. and Mrs. Terry Stoops

  8. My Uncle Bill made an important and lasting impression on my life. I will never forget him. Words can not express my emotions at this time. There will not be another like him. God bless him and his family. The Rinkels

  9. Many many things to remember about uncle Bill and county road. The most important one I think was how he and aunt Nellies doors were always open. I’m sitting here laughing because of the hundred’s of games of canasta(it seemed) we played in that house, he never played cards with us.Anyway,not that I can remember.I’m probably going to run out of space here,but I have to say how proud he was Debbie that you attended his reunions with him.Now he is at a reunion with Jesus! Love you,Rosie

  10. Dear Debbie, Will & Family, Our deepest condolances on the loss of your Dad. He and your Mom were always so kind to us as we were growing up in the North End. There is only one thing we can say about Nellie & Bill and that is they were “simply the best.” You are in our thoughts and prayers. Love, The Simich’s Bertha, Martha, Adam, Stan, Susan & Families

  11. Dear Debbie, I was so saddened to hear of your Dad’s passing. Oh but all the memories of all the years you shared. You and your family are in my thoughts. Always, Joan

  12. Dear Billy, Debbie, and Families, Please accept my sincere sympathy on the passing of your Dad. I remember that just about every time Lou [Ralich] and I sang somewhere locally both your Mom and Dad were there supporting us. It was very much appreciated. We had some good times together. My wife [Jackie] and I are out of state with a Church group so we won’t be able to get to the funeral home. But our prayers are with you. Sincerely, Jim

  13. Debbie and Family, We are so sorry for your loss. I remember when you moved to Meadville and meeting your Mom and Dad. They both were just so sweet, loving, caring and great fun to be with. I always looked forward to seeing the both of them at the MARC. They sure were proud of you and your family. Your Dad would bring the children to the complex to swim and your fitness classes how they had fun and participated in them when they were in town. I will never forget them all here for one of our special events, and 2 of your Mom’s sisters and them all dancing. I could see how much they loved you all. They would lighten up the facility when ever here. Thank-you for sharing them with us. I have often though of them and enjoy the stories from Mike. Please remember the great memories as they will carry you in the days to come. You were a super daughter and took fantastic care of them. Love & Peace to you and yours, Tom & Chris Nuzback

  14. Bill was gracious, a gentleman always with a twinkle in his eye, a loving father and grandfather, and wonderful company. He will be missed by all who were privileged to know him.

  15. Uncle Bill and Aunt Nellie, you will always be in our hearts forever. As sick as you were Mac on our last visit to your hospital room we were able to get one last Naval Salute from one fine GENTLEMAN. Love, Sonny & Bessie Crossley

  16. Billy, Debbie and families, Uncle Bill had such a gift of love,a gentle spirit and helping hand. He, Aunt Nellie and Mom were the trio that kept Boston hopping in their younger days. Uncle Bill was there after our dad died helping Mom with so many repairs around the house . . . and always took her on vacation with them. He also was like a father to our brother, Bobby – – took him everywhere with Debbie. He was our shipmate – – anytime anyone needed anything – Uncle Bill was there. Uncle Bill – you were incredible to so many & we are going to miss you – – All our love always!!

  17. There was not a kinder individual than Uncle Bill. What fond memories I have of spending precious time with he and Aunt Nellie, eating gnocchi’s at their home. Also, taking Uncle Bill to Kings Restaurant, to share a plate of liver & onions, then stopping at the Moose Lodge for a cold beer, was a memory I’ll always cherish. The time has come for you to be with Aunt Nellie, once again. You will be sadly missed.

  18. Bill, my condolences to you, your sister and famlies. Still remembering the “great” spaghetti dinners your family provided for the 1960 football team. It was special for “ALL” of the African American athletes. The measure of a family is when you feed a bunch of hungry kids. And we all enjoyed the food! (smile)

  19. Dear Debbie: So sorry to hear of our dear shipmate Bill passing away. He really was a trooper. Debbie, as I have said many times in the past, you were truly a great daughter. Your Dad must have been proud of you. Thanks a million for bringing him under greatest difficulties to our reunions. I have notified a number of shipmates. God Bless You. Alex Bomber, U.S.S. Pasadena CL-64 shipmate

  20. Debbie, I was sorry to learn of your dad’s passing. My prayers are with you and your family.

  21. Will, Please accept my sincere condolences at this time with the passing of your father. I’m sure you will miss him very much. Hope to see you at our next WHS Class of “62 reunion. Best wishes, Tom

  22. There is no memory of Serbian Christmas or Easter without the memory of Uncle Bill and Aunt Nellie. Family, food, and fellowship will be my loving memory of them both. My sincere condolences to a wonderful son and daughter…and family.

  23. All the things your Dad reminds me of: Roller skating, serbian picnics, the boat club, swimming, high balls, Penny getting a bath at the car wash, Aunt Mary’s beauty salon, Yoya, fishin’ hats, Serbian Christmas, homework, banging pots & pans on the front porch for Serbian New Year, doing dishes in “the galley”. Your house & your parents were such a big part of my younger years and I will always remember those things!

  24. Dear Deborah & Bill Sorry to hear of your Dad’s passing All USS Pasadena A division hands were very fortunate to have served under the guidence and watchful eye of CHIEF BILL McMillan. Bill made my cruise easy and I will never forget my shipmate

  25. Sorry to read of your fathers’ passing. My sister, Mary Catherine Lyle of Wellsburg mailed me his obituary. My grandfather and dad ran Grotz Mold & Machine Works…I remember your dad as a very nice man when I was only 7 years old almost 60 years ago. He was very friendly to me. He and your mother were married 2 days after my birth…Wishing you and your family fond memories of your Dad…he outlived all of them…Best wishes….Jim Grotz,Jr.

  26. Dear Will and Debbie and your families: Liz Kingsley and I send our condolences on the loss of your father. We always enjoyed the visits he made to California and the kick he got out of Liz and I. He dubbed me the Sargent one day when I was watching the kids. He and Nellie never forgot us and showed us many kindnesses. “Pap’s” sense of dignity and humor will always treasured. God bless and take care, Liz and Margo.

  27. My memory of Mr. McMillan was from about 45 years ago, on the boat with Will (whom I called Mac) and Debbie (whom he called Bug). I was trying learn to water ski. When I would get up on the skis, I was scared and would let go. After a few times of doing that I got in the water to try again and Will’s dad said, “I don’t pull quitters.” Message received. I got up and stayed up that next time. I still remember him and that lesson not to be a quitter. He shared his values and made a difference in the life of everyone he met. Debbie and Will, I’m very sorry for your loss. I know you miss him a lot.

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