Dennis J. Wilson, a retired Pacifica firefighter, Vietnam vet, beloved friend and brother, passed away on Sept. 7.

He was known for his dry sense of humor (vowing never to make an ash of himself), work ethic, competence, honesty, generosity and humility. He was the guy you could always depend on — the first to volunteer and the last to leave. When he wasn’t busy saving lives he loved to cook (“chicken thing,” anyone?), treasure hunt with his metal detector, collect antique bottles, sell old purple glass at the flea market, and play the slots at the casinos. Creative endeavors ranged from the haunted houses he built in the garage as a teenager to the cartoons he loved to draw. A devout Catholic, his faith helped him accept and endure early onset Parkinson’s disease, which he dubbed “BWB” (Brain Went Bad). For more than 20 years he dealt with its ever more severe impacts with grace and without bitterness, a remarkable achievement.

Dennis is survived by siblings Tom, Mike, Christine, Kathy, Dolores and Mary along with nieces, nephews and their children. He will be greatly missed. A funeral Mass will be offered at 11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 2, at Good Shepherd Catholic Church in Pacifica. Please wear a mask and stay distanced from others. In lieu of flowers, donations for disaster relief, food banks or Parkinson’s research would be appreciated.

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