July 12, 1940 – April 28, 2020
William Raymond “Bill” Marsh (Born July 12, 1940) passed away in his sleep on April 28, 2020, after a long battle with pneumonia.
A boxer in his youth, Bill never stopped fighting until the end. Known for his methodical speed, agility, and focus, he gave hard work new meaning, working days at a time without sleep as a commercial gillnetter on the Fraser River; after all, “there were fish to catch!”
Bill moved to Lake Cowichan with his family in 1969, where he coached his sons’ baseball teams, curled with friends, worked as a faller in the woods of southern Vancouver Island and kept his passion for both commercial and recreational fishing. He loved watching baseball, “chewing the fat”, playing crib, and sitting around his kitchen table with a cup of tea that had “just a little” sugar. He also loved to gab about sports announcers, the deer eating his plants, and politics.
A terrible logging accident in 1978 rendered the latter half of Bill’s life very different from his early years. But he always chose positivity. His charisma, intellect, and smart mouth left many chuckling (and sometimes cussing) alongside him. And when things got hard, he would give himself a strict talking to, because, in his words, “once in a while I need to talk to someone intelligent.”
Bill’s wife Verla was his rock, caring for him through many strokes and bouts of cancer. His stubbornness, toughness, and will to live kept him alive for many more years than anyone thought was possible. Indeed, he defied medical probability. Through it all, Bill continued to enjoy sport fishing, hunting, growing crops in his garden, and visiting with family and friends.
The family would like to thank the staff at Cowichan District Hospital for their incredible efforts to ensure Bill’s comfort during his final weeks.
His charm and wit will be missed, as will the smart-ass comments, and his gift for the gab. He is survived by wife Verla; children Bill, John, Lisa and Angela; stepchildren Darlene, Dean and Roger; 15 grandchildren; and 11 great grandchildren.
A celebration of life will be determined at a later date.
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