Bill Dietzel, a local veteran and champion of veterans' causes, died Thursday evening after a long battle with cancer. He was 79.
William E. Dietzel, began his military career in 1952 stationed in San Antonio, Texas. He retired on Sept. 21, 1972 rank of Senior Master Sergeant.
Mr. Dietzel was a decorated U.S. veteran who was awarded the Achievement Medal, Presidential Unit, Outstanding Unit, Good Conduct, Air Force Recognition, National Defense, Korean, Base Military Honor, Airman Medal, Air Force Training, United Nations.
Mr. Dietzel had been known as the face of the Fresno Veterans Day Parade since early 2000 when he stepped in to help organize the parade and publisher of Veterans magazine. It has since become known as the largest Veteran's Day Parade west of the Mississippi.
Mr. Dietzel leaves behind his wife of over 60 years, Marilyn Ann Dietzel.