September 7, 1931 - June 1, 2013
10 entries | 1 photo
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Dementia is the thief that robbed Bill of his life on Sunday, June 1 at Bevan Lodge in Abbotsford, BC. Diagnosed four years ago with this devastating disease, Bill was able to live at home until August last year when he went into hospital, then to long term care. Born and raised in Vancouver, Bill was an actor and voice talent who worked in Vancouver's commercial and film industry. After training at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts, Bill worked in England as a professional actor for seven years before returning to Canada in 1967. He held roles in a selection of made-in-Vancouver movies, appeared in many of the television series produced here in the 1980s and voiced numerous radio and television commercials. However, he is most known for his nine-year run on CBC's Dr. Bundolo's Pandemonium Medicine Show, where he loved being the "straight man" to comedy partners Bill Reiter, Norm Grohmann and Marla Gropper. He also professionally narrated textbooks onto tape for blind and visually impaired students at the Charles Crane Memorial Library UBC and at Langara College. In addition, Bill was in the taxi business, starting as a part-time driver to make ends meet, and ultimately owning two Yellow Cabs. As an active member of the United Church of Canada, Bill regularly served as Sunday morning lector, his rich voice bringing the scriptures to life for members of University Hill Congregation at the Chapel of the Epiphany at UBC. He also served as Lector for services presented by RiverCity Gospel Jazz. Bill was a bachelor until 1984 when he was snagged by Pauline and her 13-year-old daughter Dianne, a happening that re-branded him as Husband, Dad and ultimately Father-in-law and Grampa. He and Pauline lived in North Vancouver and the City of Vancouver before moving to Abbotsford in 2008 to be closer to their immediate family. Bill is missed by his wife Pauline, daughter Dianne Brownie (Mike), two grandsons Matthew and Kyle, cousins in Vancouver, Toronto and Philadelphia and his many many friends. In lieu of flowers, please send donations in Bill's name to The Alzheimer Society of BC. There will be a memorial service with a reception following on Saturday, June 15 at 2 p.m. at The Chapel of the Epiphany, 6030 Chancellor Blvd, UBC. Parking is available at the Rose Garden Parkade. The Chapel's limited disabled parking spots and easy-access drop-off is accessible from Iona Drive.
Published in National Post on June 8, 2013