BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH OF BILLY WILLBOND
Billy was born on the 28 September 1941 and was raised in the Gatineau Hills until his family moved to Ottawa in 1947.
Coming from a Catholic family of 7 boys and 2 girls Billy left school at 15 and went to work at the EB Eddy Pulp and Paper Company in Hull Quebec. He stayed there until reaching the age of 17 at which time he joined the Canadian Army on the 14 November 1958.
He served with the 15th Battalion the Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada in Calgary in 1958 and 1959 until the unit went to Germany to join the 4th Canadian Infantry Brigade Group at Deilinghofen in Westfalia in 1960 attached to the British Army on the Rhine,. These were exciting and troubled times, indeed, seeing the building of the Berlin Wall and the Cuban Crisis etc., etc.
The Battalion came back to Canada and were stationed in Victoria in 1963 – until it was posted to Cyprus in 1965. In the meantime Billy courted, won and married his lifelong best friend and soul mate, Lynne Nimmo of Saanichton.
In 1967 Billy applied for a transfer to the Royal Canadian Service Corps so he was sent to a couple of Navy Shrinks to be re-tested. Finding his IQ to be 179 they recommended that he be sent to the Royal Canadian Navy. When Army HQ read the report, they advised the Navy Doctors that they were too short of Admin types in the Infantry and posted Willbond to the Senior Officers Promotion Board at Army Headquarters in Ottawa.
In 1968 Willbond heard about the forming of the New Canadian Airborne Regiment in Edmonton Alberta so he immediately applied and was accepted for the Operations Sergeant Position. Commando Battle School, Ski School, Mountain School, Jungle School were added to his list of qualifications (52 courses in 20 years).
In 1972 Billy went to the DEVIL Programme (Development of Integrated Logistics) as Chief Clerk and from there he went to Carleton University for 1st Year Chinese. After the Canadian Forces Foreign Language School Qualification was obtained, he went to China Desk and from there to University of Victoria for 2nd Year Chinese (East Asian Studies) obtained “A” status whilst holding down the position of Chief Clerk of MARPAC HQ Cdts Trg Div.
During this period Willbond was elected as President of the Victoria Numismatic Society. In 1977 he was posted to Petawawa as Ops Sgt to the Special Service Force, and retired from the Army on 15 November 1978. On 11 November 1979 Billy joined CSPD as a Jail Guard/Relief Dispatcher and was employed there until the morning of the 9 of January 2002.
Active in the Veterans movement Billy has been on various Honours and Awards Committees over the years and is responsible for writing up RCMP Members up for various Meritorious Service Awards in respect to their Peacekeeping Bravery Activities.
Secretary/Treasurer of the CSPA in early 1980s and Admin Officer of the CPVA and National Sergeant at Arms of the CPVA in 1991-1994, Willbond is the Present Chairman of the Mark Isfeld Memorial Chapter of CAVUNP Honours and Awards Committee.
From 1998 to 2002 he has been the National President of ICROSS Canada (The International Community for the Relief of Starvation and Suffering) and he and Lynne are active in doing humanitarian charity work in East Africa for the Aids Orphans and the poorest of the poor. They have travelled extensively in Garissa, Siaya, Kajiado, Nairobi and Mombassa during their tours with ICROSS. Billy and Lynne live by the creed, “The needy will not be forgotten nor the hope of the afflicted perish” (Psalms 9-19)
A lifelong Numismatist, Willbond is an avid collector of Chinese Coins and Paper Notes. Billy has written and had published Numismatic Papers on such subjects as Ming Notes, Chinese Gordon Siege Notes, Hudson Bay Notes, the Airborne Coin and the Canadian Peacekeeping Service Medal.
Billy enjoys shooting, hunting, fishing and the outdoors. He has written poetry about family, hunting, police activities, peacekeeping, being in the Army and about Chinese Money. His Peacekeeping Poetry is used by teachers and students to discuss Canada’s contribution to the quest for global harmony and he has been published in Royal Canadian Legion, Thin Blue Line, The Blue Beret, newspapers, Esprit de Corps, Frank Magazine and numerous other publications over the years.
Willbond states his most important contribution to society is the assisting of putting his wife and all four of his daughters through College and university. They all contributed themselves; however, he helped when he could.
Willbond never confused “making a living” with “making a life”. The job (although important) paid the groceries, heat, light, car and house payments and provided a source of satisfaction by being a conduit to help troubled citizens at the front desk and on the phone. But more important was his life, which consisted of his belief in God, his family, and that now includes (soon) 5 grandchildren.
Recent winners of the Lotto 649 (which paid off their mortgage) see Billy and Lynne now worried about getting struck by lightning??
Billy has kept his Saanichton Handyman Licence paid up and will continue to serve the Citizens of Central Saanich via yard cleanups and lawn cutting.
At 60, a new life begins without the 12 hour nightshifts, and the stress and hey, he might just go back to University to upgrade his grade 8 certificate, which was all that was required in order to Join HMQE2’s Army?
With a word of finality he is quoted as saying: “as long as grass grows, winds blow and rivers flow – I will do no more 28s or 29s forever”
Retirement biography written by Sergeant Yuill, Platoon Sergeant at the Police Station: January 9, 2002
(Note: 10-28s and 10-29s are vehicle and criminal “want” checks which can include Interpol etc)