Cover photo for William John Bonkowski III's Obituary
William John Bonkowski III Profile Photo

William John Bonkowski III

September 27, 1962 — October 1, 2022

William John Bonkowski III, 60, of Grayling, MI passed away on October 1, 2022 after a brief but courageous battle with cancer.

Bill was born to William and Jacqueline (Matthews) Bonkowski, Jr. on September 27, 1962 in Trenton, MI, moving with his family to Grayling in 1974.  Bill graduated from Grayling Highschool in 1980.  He went on to study Police Administration at Kirtland Community College and Law Enforcement at Northwestern Michigan College and served as a deputy Sheriff in Crawford County until retiring.  Bill’s passion in life was downhill skiing.  He was an instructor/coach with the Professional Ski Instructors of America & American Association of Snowboard Instructors.  He taught skiing at The Highlands, Schuss Mountain, and was the Snow Sports School Director at Hanson Hills, as well as an Instructor/Coach at Antrim Ski Academy.  Throughout the years, Bill made many “skiing” friends.  He especially enjoyed teaching children, along with his trusty companion “Gunner” who loved to dress the part.

Preceded in death by his parents, William “Boss” (2020) & Jacqueline (2018) Bonkowski. Billy is survived by his sister, MaryJo (Michael) Fullerton of Williamsburg, MI; cousins, Judy Hopper of Williamsburg, MI and Bobby Ulieru of Lansing, MI, Aunt Deanna Matthews of Flat Rock, MI, cousins Bobby (Charlene) Matthews of Brownstown, MI, Brian (Sue) Matthews of Troy, MI, Michael (Debbie) Matthews of Ketchikan, Alaska, Aunt Carol (Pat) Warner of Trenton, MI, and cousins Kathy (Bruce) Stevenson of Lincoln Park and Tommy (Naomi) Matthews of Ypsilanti, MI.

Bill will be missed dearly by his best friend, Dave Malinowski of Grayling, MI as well as his beloved dog, Gunner; and Freddy his cat.

A Gathering of Family and Friends to remember Bill, will take place on Saturday, October 29, 2022 from 12:00 - 2:00 pm at Sorenson-Lockwood Funeral Home in Grayling, MI. Light food and refreshments will be shared at the Fraternal Order of Eagles Hall in Grayling, following the gathering at Sorenson-Lockwood Funeral Home.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in memory of Bill to the Ausable Valley Animal Shelter.  Condolences can be shared with Bill's family at

Arrangement by Sorenson-Lockwood Funeral Home.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of William John Bonkowski III, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Gathering of Family and Friends to Remember

Saturday, October 29, 2022

12:00 - 2:00 pm (Eastern time)

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Sorenson Lockwood Funeral Home, Inc.

1108 West North Down River Road
Grayling, MI 49738

*Standard text messaging rates apply.


Saturday, October 29, 2022

Starts at 2:30 pm (Eastern time)

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*Standard text messaging rates apply.



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