In Celebration of
William A. Porter
June 18, 1934 -
June 21, 2022
It is with great sadness that we announce the peaceful passing of William (Bill) Porter on Tuesday, June 21, 2022, just days after his 88th birthday.
His memory will be forever cherished by his children; Tamara (Patrick), Nancy-Deane, and Rusty, and his five grandchildren; Ryan, Marina, Darcy, Hannah, and Christian who were the greatest joy in his life. His brother Fred (Carolyne) and his children Melissa (Terry), Brad and Brian (Bonnie), his “adopted” daughter Diana, and his east coast Hunter family have been an integral part of his life, and he cherished the many wonderful memories he had with them and the friends he held so dear.
Bill was born in a small town in Alberta in 1934 to a teacher of a one-room schoolhouse, so education was a big part of his life. In high school, he won the Governor General’s award for the highest marks in History in the province. He went on to graduate as a civil engineer from the University of Alberta, and then later went on to get his M.BA. from the University of Toronto.
In his early years, he was kept busy playing semi-pro hockey, and working the oil rigs, while keeping actively involved in school. He was an adventurer, who loved to explore and enjoy life. He bought a little aerobics plane after university and enjoyed taking his friends up for a joy ride whenever he had a chance. His stories of flying with the navy military planes always brought a smile to his face, and his scary stories of flying across the continent (and landing at a secret U.S. military base) were always riveting.
It was after one of these flying adventures that he was invited on a blind date in Halifax, where he met the love of his life, Kathy. They moved to Montreal, then Mississauga, and they were happily married for 57 years despite the challenges they faced together following Kathy’s accident which left her a quadriplegic. Despite obstacles, they still managed to travel the world, spend time at their Nova Scotia cottage and enjoy events and outings closer to home.
Bill’s devotion to his church, and his compassion for the community, helped to build a strong connection within his WhiteOaks neighbourhood and create lasting friendships. He coached hockey and lacrosse, volunteered at Christ Church, and assisted in writing a book with fellow M.BA. grads, and was often found out at garage sales on Saturday mornings.
Family always came first though, as shown through his devotion to Kathy and his children, ensuring their life together was the best it could be despite the obstacles they had to overcome. He was always happiest though when he could spend time with his grandchildren, whether at home or attending as many of their games and events as possible, being the proud “grandpa” cheering from the back. He was always there for his family whenever he was needed.
His career took him all across the country in various roles. He began with CIL Explosives in mining, building bridges, and causeways, before working for MacLean-Hunter as a writer, editor, and technical field reporter in heavy construction. To stay closer to home, Bill worked for Corrugated Steel Pipe Institute as their General Manager, before moving to the Canadian Standards Association to establish national design codes and standards for construction. Here he became a Member of the Board of Governors of the World Organization of Building Officials. This led to an auditing role at Quality Management Institute within CSA and ultimately a consulting role. Bill was widely respected for his knowledge in the field of heavy construction.
Among the many wonderful attributes that spring to mind when you thought of Bill, his greatest legacy was his kindness and compassion for others. He lived life to its fullest and enjoyed most of the time he had with friends and family. His laughter was often heard across the room and brought smiles to all who knew him.
We were so blessed to have had the time we shared with him, but it makes it harder knowing we can’t share any more laughter with him. He will be greatly missed by all.
Friends may call at the Turner & Porter Neweduk-Erin Mills Chapel on Thursday, July 7th from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m.
The funeral service will take place on Friday, July 8th at 11:00 a.m. in the Chapel. To view a live stream of the event, please click below.
A burial service will follow later this summer in Nova Scotia, which family and friends are invited to attend.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Spinal Cord Injury Ontario.