- 85 years old
- Date of birth: Aug 17, 1930
- Place of birth:
- Date of passing: Feb 18, 2016
- Place of passing:
Huntsville, ON, Canada
|Sic transit gloria mundi|
After enjoying a remarkable life filled with love, adventure, families and dear friends, we are sad to note the passing of Bill [William] van Stijgeren.
Born in Holland to Elizabeth [nee Blokker] and Mars, Bill was one of a close and energetic family with 5 boys, Jan, Gijs, Dirk, Cees and 2 girls, Odine and Liesbeth. At 18 he sailed to Mexico to join his father, who was an Agricultural Attaché to the Mexican government. Moving from Mexico to the US and eventually Canada, Bill had many adventures and careers, among them cowboy, silver miner, bellhop, property manager, commercial real estate broker, and for 30 years the owner and operator of the Gryffin Lodge in Huntsville, ON with his wife Shelby Hornby.
Growing up by the sea, he had always wanted to be in the navy, but had vision issues that prohibited this. Bill co/owned many boats over the years, including the freighter SS Tropic Sea, the schooners Maya and Jupiter and a fleet of smaller boats.
Throughout his life Bill loved and was loved by many, and his descendants - daughters Caprice, Kim, Nikki, son Ian and grandchildren Brittany, Leigh and Mic - will carry on his fearless and convivial spirit, and hopefully his gift of languages, through the next generations.
Many thanks to the Palliative care team, and dear family and friends who all helped Bill enjoy his last few months. A celebration of his life will be held in May. We expect laughter, tears, mariachi music and a few good stories.
"My! What a great guy!! with so many accomplished exploits. We will miss him when we rented many, many times Cottage 1872, where he never-ever missed an evening with a visit to us ... and ... with all his great stories from "A to Z!!!." And in conjunction with all of that ... Bill and Shelby ran such a pristine and up-scale splendid resort, that now we have to go to the ahhh Tulip Inn. So ..Our Condolences to Shelby and all other family members. Therefore... With our fondess and love Mike & Carolyn Gossage, Toronto, and may Sir William R.I.P"
"Your dad was great guy, took us in to your family's home when we came to Canada as 18 year old made us feel very welcome .
Condolence Kim and Caprice and the rest of the family.
My he rest in peace ."
"You have many people in your life and friends. But only one dad. It sounds like he lived and loved a full life. I hope his joy and adventure will continue in you- as it has already. Glad I got to meet him at your birthday party.
Love, Wilma Snippe"
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