William H. Gates, father of Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates died on Monday. He was 94. In 2018, the billionaire philanthropist revealed that his father was suffering from Alzheimer's disease. "My dad was the 'real' Bill Gates," his son wrote on Twitter on Tuesday. "He was everything I try to be and I will miss him every day."
My dad was the “real” Bill Gates. He was everything I try to be and I will miss him every day.https://t.co/OnAEsmosNb— Bill Gates (@BillGates) September 15, 2020
Gates Sr. was a prominent attorney in Seattle and he influenced his son's business career. Originally, the Microsoft co-founder went by William Gates III, but as his fame grew, he picked up the "Junior" suffix and his dad went by "Senior." Gates Jr. said his dad never used the name William H. Gates II, thinking it was "too stuffy."
"My sisters, Kristi and Libby, and I are very lucky to have been raised by our mom and dad," Gates Jr. wrote in his GatesNotes post. "They gave us constant encouragement and were always patient with us. I knew their love and support were unconditional, even when we clashed in my teenage years. I am sure that's one of the reasons why I felt comfortable taking some big risks when I was young, like leaving college to start Microsoft with Paul Allen. I knew they would be in my corner even if I failed."
Gates Jr. says he worries that he, like his father, could develop Alzheimer's disease and has donated more than $100 million to help find a cure.