Submitted by Jan J. Barnes
This newspaper obituary was found in a scrapbook belonging to Lela Smart Johnson. W. A. Bradley was the son of R. W. and Mary Johnson Bradley. His tombstone lists his birthdate as 16 October 1853. There is no death date on the tombstone. He is buried in the Maple Hill Cemetery beside his wife, Magnolia Sarver Bradley (12 September 1855 - 20 October 1913). They were married on 25 October 1874. William married Ellen Groves on 3 November 1914.
A Good Man Dead
In the passing of Mr. W. A. Bradley at his home in the Eastern section of the city of Portland, on Thursday afternoon, December 26th, 1918, the city has lost one of its oldest most substantial and worthy citizens.
It was the writer's good fortune to have known him long and well and we only knew him to esteem him more highly as the years passed by. Today we miss his kindly smile and friendly greeting; we long in vain to hear the ring of jovial laughter and to feel again his genial presence. As we stood by his open grave as the last sad rites were performed, and as the clay of earth closed above his silent resting place, we said with the poet:
"Cold in the dust the perished
heart may die,
But that which warmed it once
can never die,"
The funeral services were held at the home at 3 o'clock Friday afternoon, Eld. Hamilton of So. Tunnel, officiating, paying a beautiful tribute to the memory of the deceased. The casket was covered with the most beautiful floral design loving fingers ever wrought, all of which spoke of peace and immortality. The music rendered was such as to soften the hearts of moisten all eyes. At the close of the services a long procession followed the funeral car to our silent city. At the open rave we say "farewell." May God's purest angels guard his slumbers.
He was a devoted husband, a tender brother, and to his friends, the soul of fellowship. But the greatest of all-he was a man. And as a man it is that those who knew him best most love to comtemplate him. He believed in the fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man. He believed that the man who scatters flowers in the pathway of his fellowmen, who lets into the dark places of life the sunshine of human sympathy and human happiness, is following in the footsteps of his Master.