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Sad News - Bill McCaleb


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It is with a heavy heart that I report my best friend Bill McCaleb (mibcapper) passed away yesterday at his home. I loved him like a brother. Bill was a wounded Vietnam Veteran who got into a land mine within days after deploying to the front lines. He carried the scars and health issues associated with his injuries for the rest of his life. After more than a year of rehab in Germany and California he became a USPS postal carrier in west central Illinois where he eventually retired early after a back injury and more surgery. He collected marbles for about 30 years and dug at nearly every factory in West Virginia and Christensen Agate too. I have never known another person who was as excited about dirty marbles as he was.

Bill, Ron Shepherd and I spent many days and nights marbling and over many years attended so many shows together that we became known as the "Three Amigos". "Get 'em all" was one of Bill's favorite marbling phrases and he contributed much to the hobby. One of his many achievements was discovering and naming the Alley Carnival. Years ago, I picked him up in Illinois and took him to the VA Hospital in Indianapolis and back. When I got home, I found a Carnival he had slipped into my coat pocket. That's the kind of person Bill was, generous to a fault. I spent many days with him talking marbles, looking at marbles and swapping marbles, and we shared all the ups and downs of life and supported one another just like brothers would.  Fortunately, Ron, Nola Morgan and I were able to spend a couple of more days visiting with him shortly after Christmas. Bill was in high spirits and we relived a lot of good times and marble adventures past. As usual, he was gibing with us and laughing and having as much fun as he could muster, just like he always did. Only this time, he wasn't able to muster quite as much as he usually would. Bill always lived life in the moment, and grabbed every ounce of joy that he could.

Rest in peace brother Billy, I already miss you dearly.

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Bill McCaleb that name meant a true friend to me for over twenty years.  We shared all the joy and the disappointments over many years. He leaned on my shoulder and I Ieaned on his shoulder whenever the need arose.  We shared many miles across the country going to marble shows and chasing marbles in the dirt. We were the Three Amigos. Marbles have brought so many wonderful people into my life.  Bill was one of the early ones and who never left my side from the first day we saw each other eye to eye. The stories that I could tell, like a Tom Sawyer and Huck Fin adventures. I also received free one of Bills Alley Carnival marbles. Ric and I were standing there with him the day he bought them, thinking they might be Peltier. Bill was not good with driving directions or a GPS. So many times he got lost coming from IL to my house in WV.  He was suppose to arrive in WV about 6-7 pm one evening. At 11pm I got a call from Bill. He was about 75-100 miles north of me, up the Ohio river across from Sistersville WV. He finally knew where he was but, no way to cross the river. The river ferry was closed down at 6pm. So he slept in his truck at the ferry landing and came back 100 miles south to me the next morning. We did have a good last visit a couple weeks ago. Making the best of a bad situation. 

On one of Bills many trips back home several years ago to IL from digging marbles in WV.  He wrote this for me. He left me many items but this is so special. A side of Bill that many people never knew. 

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Rest in peace my true friend. I know you have that dream pocket marble with you.  

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I truly have and will continue to enjoy his posts, all of which showed off his outstanding collection and even more so, his outstanding knowledge of this hobby that we have come to love. Both new and veteran collectors alike. 

As I have stated before, this forum and its members are and always will be like a second family too me. Whether I have met you or not, this bond that I have with the people here,too me,  is second to none.

RIP, Bill "Mibcapper" McCaleb ❤

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1 hour ago, Fire1981 said:

Here’s my Pelt I’m posting in honor of the one and only mibcapper🔥

I can pretty much guarantee that he would of liked that one too.

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  • 2 weeks later...

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