Born April 4, 1940 Winnipeg, Manitoba; Died January 6, 2013 Nanaimo, B.C., Billy, beloved husband of Joanne (nee Comberbach) passed peacefully at NRGH Palliative Care Unit from COPD after a valiant struggle.

Predeceased by parents, John and Dora. Survived by his two sons, Mickey (Michael of Ottawa, Ontario, wife Becky) and Rickey (Richard of Kamloops, B.C., wife Tanya) and his pride and joy – grandchildren: Liam and Bethany (Rickey) and Sammy and Vicki (Mickey).

Billy was the eldest of seven children: Joan (Ray Hammel), Jim (Emily), David (Barb), Irene, George (Bev), Debbie (Curly Kaus, deceased) and a dozen nieces and nephews.

He worked for Manitoba Telephone System for 35 years as a tradesman. He spent 30 years volunteering for Scouts Canada, Beaver Leader, Camping (cook), organizing and administering and even digging KYBOs. Every job was important. He loved fishing, hiking, playing the piano, curling, playing cards, cleaning the swimming pool and times with family and friends.

We arrived on Vancouver Island July 1995 and Bill found his passion for hiking all the local trails. Monday hikes with the Cameron Island group followed by a pub lunch were very high on his weekly agenda. Billy loved to travel; cruises, trains, flights to “everywhere” and a cross-Canada drive and a trip to hike Zion, Bryce and the Grand Canyon with Jill and Len.

Billy loved his life, a good joke, pride in the success of his boys, the joy of his grandchildren and amazing himself with all he had in life. He worked hard for everything; even the 50 years of marriage to his Joanne, a friend he knew since he was 6 years old.

Special thanks to Doctor Nick Schulson.

You are invited to celebrate Bill’s life on Saturday, January 19th at the Nanaimo Yacht Club from 11 am ‘till 2 p.m., including a light lunch. In lieu of flowers, if you wish, Bill would request a donation to find a cure for Crohns Disease. CHEO Foundation – IBD Fund, 415 Smyth Road, Ottawa, Ontario K1H 8M8 *To help cure his little granddaughter Vicki and others.

“He is not gone – he’s just away”

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