August 10, 1926 ~ February 10, 2012
Deeply loved and very much missed, Bill passed away peacefully surrounded by family. Throughout their 57 years of marriage, Bill was cherished by his loving wife, Fran. Dementia slowly robbed him of what he once was and Fran remained by his side devoted to every aspect of his care.
Bill inspired and was adored by his four children and their partners, Margo and Norman, Ross and Carole, Howie, Geoff and Sophie. ‘Papa’ was loved by his 8 grandchildren, Joshua, Isaac, Noah, Moira, Kieran, Addysen, Owen and Liam. He leaves behind many nieces and nephews from across Canada, Australia and France. Bill is predeceased by his parents, his brother Ralph, sister Dorothy and sister-in-law, Audrey.
Born in Kobe, Japan to missionary parents, Bill’s father was Dean of Theology, Law and Literature and finally served as President of Kwansei Gakuin University. Doted upon by his much older brother and sister, Bill was an energetic and vibrant youngster who began playing violin at six years of age. A talented athlete, he attended the Canadian Academy until his return to Canada at the age of 14 just before the war erupted in Japan.
He pursued his secondary education in Toronto and St. Catherines. He attended McMaster University, earning his BA followed by his Bachelor and Masters of Social Work at the University of Toronto. He later earned his Master’s of Criminology from the University of California at Berkley in 1965. From 1954 to 1969 Bill worked tirelessly for the Ontario Probation Service as a Probation Officer, Juvenile Court Judge, Social Worker, Mental Health Professional and finally as the Director of Planning.
After 13 years in Aurora raising his young family together with Fran, Bill accepted an appointment to the National Parole Board and the family moved to Ottawa. After several years of service he accepted a position as Professor of Criminology at the University of Ottawa in 1971. He was shortly thereafter appointed
Chairman of the National Parole Board in 1974 and remained in that position until he retired in 1986.
When they were not relishing in the solace and comfort of their beloved cottage, Norcliffe, on Lake Muskoka together with family and friends, Bill and Fran enjoyed cycling together and many international travel adventures.
Retirement allowed Bill to devote more time to the activities that he most treasured. Salmon fishing with his brother Ralph on the West Coast, writing poetry, swimming with the Masters Swim Club but most of all his passion for jazz. He played the trumpet, coronet and flugel horn and later adapted jazz to his violin. He thoroughly enjoyed performing with The National Press Club and Allied Workers Jazz Band Inc. and The Phoenix Jazz Band. Some of his most precious memories included afternoon jam sessions with his fellow musicians around the grand piano at home as well as playing for the annual family Christmas Eve open house. Bill brought much joy to his life and to the lives of others through his music.
However, Bill will be most remembered for his gentle manner and the intuitive sensitivity that he brought to all aspects of his life. Whether it was a casual chat with one of his kids or a conference of significant proportions, Bill tuned in with every part of himself and took enormous pride in knowing that greater understanding and perspective was always possible and that mutual goals could be achieved through the pursuit of thoughtful communication. The success he achieved in his life was evident in the love, respect and admiration of his friends and family.