William Parsonage of Merryflat, SK, beloved husband of the late Frances Parsonage, passed away on June 18, 2020 in Maple Creek, SK at the age of 91. Bill leaves to cherish his memory two children, Jim (Glenda) Parsonage of Maple Creek, SK and Nancy (Doug) Hautz of MacNutt, SK; 5 grandchildren Abbey (Jay) Stokke, Emilie (Luc) Parsonage, Tasha (Scott) Hautz , Lacey Hautz and Jaron Hautz; 3 great grandchildren Dawson Stokke, Jameson Adam and Maysa Stokke; two foster sons Clint (Sandi) Carignan of Hinton, AB and Kenneth Cadwallader of Consul, SK; one brother Skimp (Dorothy) Parsonage of Maple Creek, SK; one sister Margie Kennedy of Kamloops, BC; one brother-in-law Leonard (Stella) Arndt of Saskatoon, SK; and two sisters-in-law Violet (James) Anderson of Spiritwood, SK; and Phyllis Parsonage of Lethbridge, AB. He also leaves to cherish his memory numerous nephews, nieces, neighbours and friends.
Bill was born June 12, 1929 in Maple Creek, SK to the late John and Grace Parsonage. Growing up in the Merryflat/Consul area, Bill attended school and worked for his dad and Uncle Reddy until 1962 when he and Skimp bought the ranch. Most of Bill’s fondest memories from his childhood had to do with horses and ranching. He often spoke of trailing horses long distances with good help from neighbors and friends, most of who, now, have already passed on.
Bill married Frances Arndt on December 4, 1959. Their first home was a one-room shack on the old Billy Wilson Place. As they had no electricity, they relied on wood heat and kerosene lamps in addition to a feather tick from Frances’ mother, Lily. They only spent one month there until the Aslin house was moved in from Robsart, SK to the home place of today. Together, Bill & Frances ranched for 50+ years along the banks of Battle Creek, first on their own and later with their son Jim and his wife Glenda and their children Abbey & Emilie. After Frances’ passing on November 15, 2012, Bill remained on the ranch for two more years until he moved into the Southview Manor in Maple Creek. Losing Frances was very difficult so being able to socialize with people he knew at the Ford garage, local restaurants, Cowtown Auction, and within the Manor itself, brought Bill much joy.
Bill loved to share stories from his past. He was proud of his role as a horse wrangler for the 20th Century Fox movie, “The Canadians”, filmed in the Cypress Hills in 1960. In 1961, Bill obtained his private pilot’s license and bought his first airplane; one of several. He loved to share stories of flying to Havre, MT for supplies and shooting coyotes with Skimp and his long-time friend, Joe Geiger. Both he and Frances participated in trapshooting and they were actively involved in the lives of their children and grandchildren. Likewise, Bill served his communities by acting as president of the Oldtimer’s Association in Maple Creek, a director of the Cypress Hills Stockmen’s Association, and a councillor for the RM of Reno #51 for many years.
Bill was predeceased by his parents John & Grace Parsonage, sister Alice Parsonage, brother-in-law Harold Kennedy, brother Jack Parsonage, and his beloved wife Frances. Bill will be remembered for his hearty laugh, gentle nature and enthusiastic hugs. He rarely spoke an unkind word of others and had a very forgiving heart. He enjoyed celebrating the love of family and good friends and will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved him.
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