William Duncan Bailey, age 71, a well-known Barber and Stylist in Battle Creek, died with his family at his side on Tuesday, May 10, 2022, at Ascension Borgess Medical Center in Kalamazoo.
Duncan was born September 7, 1950 in Battle Creek to William Duncan Bailey, Sr. and Barbara (Bacon) Bailey. He was a 1968 graduate of Harper Creek High School, attended Ferris State College in the Pharmacy Program and then graduated from Flint Barber School in 1971.
Duncan was united in marriage to Darline Louise Schieffer on January 29, 1972 at St. Joseph Catholic Church. Surviving are Darline, his wife of 50 years; two sons, Trevor (Jen) Bailey of Muskegon, Ryan (Melissa) Bailey of Boerne, TX; five grandchildren, Harper Bailey, Chase Bailey, Taylor Bailey, Duncan Bailey, Griffin Bailey; and his aunt, Linda Williams of Battle Creek. Duncan was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Patrick Bailey and his half-brother, Rod Cunningham.
Duncan began to Barber in Muskegon, MI for two years and returned to Battle Creek in 1973. He started his career in Battle Creek at Mr. Lynn's, soon moving to Wattles Park Barber Shop as a partner. During that time, with his sons participating in the sports at Wattles Park Men's Club, the partners saw a need to refresh the many boys and girls and opened The Dairy Factor serving many ice cream cones. The barber shop transitioned to Duncans at that time. Duncan's Hairlines was born with a move to associate with Cole's Clothes' of Distinction downtown. Duncan's Hairlines needed more space to bring the first Children Only specialty haircare space (Kids Kuts) to Battle Creek and has been at the West Columbia Avenue location for 35 year. As if that wasn't enough, Duncan taught cutting techniques at barber/beauty conference events in Michigan and the Midwest. His clients/customers and Duncan's staff were family and friends.
Duncan was a dedicated member of Harper Creek Optimist Club (HCOC), holding all club elected positions, Distinguished as President and earning a prized gold watch. He was named Optimist of the Year several times for service. Many early years of the Battle Creek Christmas Parade were planned and organized at the Bailey kitchen table as he was always a core member of the HCOC parade committee, never missing a year. He was tireless as a key member as the largest club fund raiser, the yearly draw down event was a passion. Truly a "Friend of Youth", there for the club sponsored activities. He enjoyed golfing with his sons and friends. Duncan loved taking trips on his Harley with Darline or the Guys. He loved his community and would do anything for family and friends. Duncan will be remembered as a loving father, husband, grandfather, great friend, always for his wit, sly humor, stories and compassion, many know his "Duncanisms"
A gathering to celebrate Duncan's Life will be held 3:00 pm-6:00 pm Monday, May 23, 2022 at Riverside Golf Club & Banquet Center, 245 East Columbia Avenue, Battle Creek, MI. It will be "Duncan Casual" welcoming anyone who cares to share a Duncan story 3:30 pm - 4:00 pm.
Memorial contributions may be made to Harper Creek Optimist Memorial Scholarship Fund, through the Battle Creek Community Foundation, 32 W. Michigan Ave. Suite 1, Battle Creek, MI 49017. Arrangements are by Farley Estes Dowdle Funeral Home & Cremation Care.