BELL, WILLIAM (BILL) HAMILTON October 14, 1923 - November 24, 2019 Athlete, teacher, coach, husband, father and grandfather. Born in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, Dad slipped away peacefully in his 97th year, on Sunday, November 24th. Dad was a proud WWII veteran serving in the RCAF assigned to 427 "Lion" Squadron part of the Canadian 6 Group stationed in England from March to December 1944. Dad served as a mid upper gunner in his Halifax bomber, surviving 34 missions with his fellow crewmen. After completing his tour of duty, Dad returned to Toronto and successfully tried out for the Toronto Argonauts playing a variety of positions (required in those days) as a scat back, defensive back, punter and backup quarterback. His name is proudly displayed on the Grey Cup three times, winning consecutive championships in 1945, '46 and '47 with the Argos. In those years, pro football did not generate anything close to a reasonable income and so additional employment opportunities were constantly being sought out during the off season. One such opportunity involved Dad taking a summer job in the northern community of Kapuskasing, ON, working for a local pulp and paper company where he was introduced to a very pretty young lady (Logia Trukan) working in the office. One thing led to another and they were off on their first of many dates before marrying in 1948. Mom and Dad were soul mates, enjoying each other's company happily married for 54 years. After his Argo football career, Dad pursued his degree and teaching certification at Queen's University which included playing four years with the Queens Golden Gaels football team. More wonderful memories and friends were collected over those university years. After graduation, Dad and Mom packed up and headed north once again to start a family and teaching career in the mining town of Lively, ON, just west of Sudbury, raising sons Mike, Colin and Tom. Sadly, Colin passed away in infancy. Dad eventually became Head of the Physical Education Department at Lively & District Secondary School. Along with being an educator, Dad excelled in coaching and helping students develop their athletic potential. After a career in education spanning 30 years, Dad and Mom built their retirement home on Irish Lake just outside Markdale, ON. The next 20 years were spent in happy retirement, blending into the community, making friends, golfing, cross country and downhill skiing, fishing, a few trips here and there sprinkled in and many an evening fire enjoyed together. Following Mom's passing, Dad found companionship with Rosamond Nicholas. After marrying, they spent a number of years together living in Markdale, travelling to Florida in the winter and Nova Scotia in the summer. Dad was predeceased by sisters Pauline Dooley and Jewel Russell, and brother Garnet. The family would like to thank all the dedicated staff at both Whispering Pines Retirement Residence and Grove Park Long Term Care Home in Barrie, ON, for the wonderful care Dad received. Cremation has already taken place. A celebration of life is being planned in early May. Announcement to follow.
Published in Toronto Star on Nov. 30, 2019.