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Flowers Death Notices Flowers

Holmes, William J. (Bill)

HOLMES, William Joseph (Bill)

It is with sadness, that we announce the passing of our father, Bill, at St. Joseph’s Health Centre in Guelph, Ontario on October 6, 2020 in his 98th year.

Bill is predeceased by his adored wife, Peggy, his parents Violet and Francis Holmes, his siblings Jack Holmes, Helen Near, Joan McEnery, Bev Laing, and Robert Holmes, his beloved cousin Jim (Red) Holmes, his brother-in-law Warren Roeder and his good friends Fred Hatfield and Bob Soo.

Bill was a loving father to Cathy Nadalin (John), Dale Holmes, and Kelly Holmes (Lawrence) and cherished his role as Grandpa to Sara, Kayla, Emily and Lorcan. He was thrilled to meet his only great-grandchild Avery Rose in person this past September. Bill is survived by sister Jean Hall, brother Gord Holmes, brother-in-law Dale Roeder (Marion) and many nieces and nephews, as well as valued friends Sam Johnson and Ted Guthrie. He will be missed by his nurturing caregivers Pam and Laura.

Bill was a farm boy and grew up in the country outside of Acton, Ontario. Here, he wandered with his dog Happy, ate vegetables straight from the garden and skated on the neighbour’s pond. As a young man, Bill was athletic and played on both hockey and baseball teams. Throughout his life, Bill was a fan of the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Toronto Blue Jays. He loved Chevys, learned the saxophone and worked as a fishing guide at his uncle’s lodge in Temagami. Bill was a Veteran who enlisted at age 19 and served during WWII on the homefront in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick from 1942-45. Post-war, Bill worked at Orenda Engines in Malton and was proud to have been associated with the company that developed and constructed the Avro Arrow. Following that, Bill began his over 40-year career as a real estate agent in Guelph. He met his wife, Peggy, at the Queen’s Restaurant in Kitchener while on business and loved her instantly. Bill celebrated his sixtieth wedding anniversary with Peggy six months before her passing.

Bill was fond of horses and over the years would occasionally assist with grooming the Standardbreds his cousin Jim raced. Favourite of all though, were his grandchildren. Bill took great delight in being the silly, fun grandpa and even in his nineties still engaged in a rousing game of hide n’ seek.

Bill had a zest for life right until the end and his feistiness carried him through two late in life hip surgeries and brushes with bladder cancer.

There will be a graveside service at Woodlawn Cemetery in Guelph at a later date. Arrangements entrusted to the WALL-CUSTANCE FUNERAL HOME & CHAPEL, 519-822-0051 or In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate donations to Earthroots to protect old-growth forests in Temagami, a place that Bill loved.

A tree will be planted in memory of William J. (Bill) Holmes in the Wall-Custance Memorial Forest.

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