Community and family are remembering former County warden and Dysart reeve William “Bill” Davis.
He passed away Nov. 30 in Hyland Crest. His visitation and celebration of life and reception will be held this Tuesday and Wednesday.
Murray Fearrey, himself a long-time former County warden and Dysart reeve, will deliver Wednesday’s eulogy.
He told The Highlander he “had the distinct pleasure” of spending many hours with Bill in their nearly 29 years on Dysart and County council, including when Bill served as warden.
Fearrey said he always found Bill’s interests to be consistent over that period.
“He loved Haliburton and Haliburton County and was dedicated to doing everything he could to make life better for its residents.
“Bill was an excellent communicator, he knew nearly everyone, and if he didn’t know you, he would after he met you the first time.”
Fearrey said Bill was not afraid of controversy. “In fact, I think he reveled sometimes with the challenge, always with the intent of caring for people. His strength was advocating for the underdog, an admirable trait.”
Algonquin Highlands Mayor Carol Moffatt said she was sorry to learn of Bill’s passing.
“Bill’s entire life was entrenched in community service and I was honoured to watch and learn from him in my early days at the County table,” she said.
She added that Bill had a long and dedicated history of community involvement and decision-making.
She said Bill “knew everyone, seemed to have ‘been there’ for everything we ever discussed, had a joke for almost any occasion and was just a really nice guy. There aren’t many left like Bill.”
Former Minden Times publisher and editor Jack Brezina said he will always remember Bill as a man of the people.
“Often, I would see him at the coffee shop, moving from table to table, greeting everyone and listening to their comments and suggestions. He didn’t always agree with what they had to say, but he always made a point of letting people have their say.”
Bill was also a paramedic for Dysart et al and dispatcher for the Ministry of Health.
The 78-year-old leaves behind his wife, Freda, three children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.
There’ll be a reception at the Haliburton Community Funeral Home Dec. 10 from 2-6 p.m. The Celebration of Life is Dec. 11 at 11 a.m. followed by a reception in the community room.