Couple killed in car crash in Everett known for their art and kindness
EVERETT – William “Bill” Jones was known in the city for his art, his long beard and bringing his wife to work.
He gained international fame in 2009 for creating Winkers, pants with eyes on the back that blink when you walk.
Jones died of his injuries in a car crash in Everett on November 26.
He was 85 years old. His wife, Otila, 67, died alongside him.
“They have been married for 11 years. All his friends at work knew him, ”said his daughter, Gwen Ingram-Jones. “It was really cute.”
Otila Jones, a retired teacher from Peru, was a certified nursing assistant at Bethany at Pacific in Everett.
Police do not know why the Honda sedan driven by Bill Jones veered left to cause the collision on West Mukilteo Boulevard near Forest Drive. The driver of the other car sustained non-life threatening injuries.
Bill and Otila met online. Their age and cultural differences didn’t bother, her daughter said.
“He spoke a little Spanish,” Ingram-Jones said. “She went to school and studied English and got her NAC.”
She said her father was a self-taught artist using mixed mediums, with aluminum and plastic being his favorites. He was often found tinkering with model airplanes or mechanical gadgets. His patent applications included a snow plow trail and Winkers pants.
“He was a ‘starving artist’,” she said. “He struggled with depression most of his life and art was his outlet.”
At the time of his death, he was transposing his mother’s painting of a bouquet of flowers into a design that Otila would embroider as a surprise gift for her brother.
“Despite the depression and being a shy person, he found little pleasure in things. He would sing a little tune or have a joke to share or make a face to make a little child laugh, ”Ingram-Jones said. “He was passionate about politics. He had compassion for people who were oppressed and cared for those who struggled. ”
He made a list of achievements that began with winning an elementary school poppy painting competition. His art has been displayed in shows.
As per his wishes, instead of a funeral, a gathering for friends and family will be held from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Monday, December 27 at Legion Hall at Legion Park in Everett. The event will be streamed live on Facebook, said Ingram-Jones, who can be contacted at [email protected]
Otila Jones will be buried in Peru. A bilingual memorial service was recently held for her in the Bethany at Pacific Chapel on Zoom for friends and family.
“She was greatly appreciated by the residents of Bethany, as well as her colleagues,” said Reverend Todd Wright, director of pastoral care at Bethany.
He said Otila Jones was the centre’s employee of the month in November and that in June she received the Towel and Basin award.
“She frequently took extra shifts at work. From what I’ve heard, she never said no, ”Wright said. “In long-term care, a certified nursing assistant isn’t necessarily a glorious job, but it’s important. And you really have to care about people to do that.
In Peru, Otila Jones was a teacher for 27 years, teaching physics and chemistry. She was the mother of three children, Anita, Adita and Elías Daid.
Bill Jones, born and raised in Idaho, was the oldest of seven boys. He was the father of five daughters, Wilma, Charlie, Melissa, AmaLee and Gwen.
He received a world famous splash in 2009 for the Winkers, decorative pants that appear to “blink” from behind the wearer as they walk.
Jones experimented on his daughters’ pants. He made Winkers on an ironing board in the living room of his Riverside home. People would send their pants to him with a mark on the end of their buttocks and he would paint the design by hand, using fabric paint. A single pair of pants could take him over 10 hours to finish. He also created designs for kids, such as animated dinosaurs on shirt elbows and a popping Jack-in-the-box on pant knees.
“It was an exciting project for two reasons,” Ingram-Jones said. “He thought it was fun. He was working hard to secure enough funds to bring his wife to the United States legally and safely. ”