Bill Gates Sr, father of Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, breathed his last on September 14 at his beach house on Hood Canal, in the Seattle area. The 94-year-old American attorney was suffering from Alzheimer's disease which caused his demise, his family said in an announcement. Gates said that his father was the “real” Bill Gates and was everything he tries to be.
“People used to ask my dad if he was the real Bill Gates. The truth is, he was everything I try to be. I will miss him every day,” wrote Gates in a blog post remembering his father.
The tech entrepreneur turned philanthropist said that the passing of his father was not unexpected since his health condition had been deteriorating. Gates said that the family members had a long time to reflect on how lucky they were to have had “this amazing man in our lives for so many years”.
Reminiscing the early days of Microsoft, Gates said that he turned to his father at key moments to seek his legal counsel, adding that the lawyer had a quiet influence on almost everything he has done in life. He also recalled a similar incident when Gates Sr helped out Howard Schultz of Starbucks at a key juncture in his business life.
“My dad’s wisdom, generosity, empathy, and humility had a huge influence on people around the world,” wrote Gates.
Gates, who has contributed immensely to social welfare programmes through Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, said that his father’s influence on their philanthropy was just as big. He added that Gates Sr shaped the values of the foundation more than anyone else through his collaborative and judicious decisions.
“He was quick to tear up when he saw people suffering in the world. And he would not let any of us forget the people behind the strategies we were discussing,” wrote Gates.