Microsoft’s founder Bill Gates’s father William H. Gates II died Monday at his beach home on Hood Canal in Washington.
In a tweet on Bill Gates’s official account, his son paid tribute to a ‘dignified man’ who was a ‘quiet influence on almost everything I have done in life.’
He wrote, “My dad was the “real” Bill Gates. He was everything I try to be and I will miss him every day.”
The lawyer and philanthropist from Alzheimer’s disease, the family said.
My dad was the “real” Bill Gates. He was everything I try to be and I will miss him every day.https://t.co/OnAEsmosNb
— Bill Gates (@BillGates) September 15, 2020
‘My dad’s wisdom, generosity, empathy, and humility had a huge influence on people around the world,’ Bill Gates wrote in the tribute, explaining that his health had been declining for some time.
“When I was a kid, he wasn’t prescriptive or domineering, and yet he never let me coast along at things I was good at, and he always pushed me to try things I hated or didn’t think I could do (swimming and soccer, for example),” Gates Jr. wrote.
“And he modelled an amazing work ethic. He was one of the hardest-working and most respected lawyers in Seattle, as well as a major civic leader in our region.”
Born in 1925, Gates Sr. grew up in Bremerton, Washington, where his parents owned a furniture store. He joined the Army following his freshman year at the University of Washington and en routed to Japan when it surrendered in 1945.
He served a year in war-torn Tokyo before returning to the United States and resuming his education, his family said.
After earning his law degree in 1950, he began working in private practice and as a part-time Bremerton city attorney.
He formed a Seattle law firm with two other partners that eventually became Preston Gates and Ellis — now known as K & L Gates. The firm was one of the first to work with the region’s technology industry.
However, K & L Gates is one of the world’s largest law firms.
Gates Sr. and Mary Maxwell, had two daughters and a son — Gates Jr. — and remained married until her death in 1994. Later, he married Mimi Gardner with whom he spent the last quarter-century of his life.