It is with heavy hearts that we announce the sudden passing of William (Bill) Walter Marshall at home, surrounded by loved ones, on June 28, 2023. Devoted son, cherished brother, beautiful husband, wonderful father and beloved grandfather, great grandfather and uncle, a friend to many, it is impossible to describe the hole in our hearts left by his departure from this life.
Born in St John’s, Newfoundland to Gertrude Bolt and Walter Marshall on August 23, 1935, he was educated at Bishop Feild College, Memorial University, the University of King’s College and Dalhousie University. He was called to the Newfoundland bar in 1958, practiced law in St John’s and later went on to form a successful law practice, Marshall, White, Ottenheimer & Green.
On May 14, 1960, he married the love of his life, Joan Marshall (Rooney). Their marriage of 64 years was steadfast and a beautiful example of true partnership to their three children.
His life was full. In 1968, he was elected Eastern vice president of the Progressive Conservative Party and was appointed policy chairman, president of the party association and interim leader in 1969. He represented St John’s East in the Newfoundland House of Assembly from 1970 to 1986, where he served as president of the executive council and as the minister responsible for offshore negotiation with Ottawa, which culminated in the Atlantic Accord. He was the last living member of the first progressive conservative cabinet since confederation. He believed that there was no greater honour than serving the people of the province that he loved so deeply.
In 1986, he was named to the Court of Appeal of Newfoundland, where he served until 2003. During that time he learned to speak French, immersing himself at every opportunity. When he was not working, he could be seen cycling around Windsor Lake. Retirement was not a word in his vocabulary and he remained busy for many years after he left the Court.
He served as Chancellor for the Anglican Diocese for four decades. In recognition of his service, William received an honorary doctorate degree from Queen’s college in 2015. He was also awarded an Honorary Doctorate from Memorial University in October 2016.
Never one to shy away from a challenge, William achieved much and touched so many in his 87 years of life. His greatest pride, however, was his family. The love William had for his Wife, children and grandchildren is beyond words. His spirit, adoring smile, and compassion will be greatly missed by all.
Leaving to mourn his wife of 64 years, Joan Marshall, son Timothy (April), daughter Valerie, daughter Beth, his much loved grandchildren Jonathan, Andrew, Leanna, Beth, Kate and Getiso, great grandchildren, sisters-in-law Carol, Nancy, and Jeanette, brothers-in law Edsel and Gunar, nieces and nephews and many many friends. He was predeceased by his parents, by his brother, John and sister, Anthea. The family would like to say a special thank you to Robert Marshall and Calvin Leyte for their kindness and help to our family.
Bill’s compassion, brilliance and sharp wit will be missed by many. Forever loved. Until we meet again.
Visitation will be held at Carnell’s Funeral Home, 329 Freshwater Road on Sunday July 2 from 2-4 pm and 7-9 pm; and Monday July 3 from 2-7 pm.
A celebration of his incredible life will be held at the Anglican Church of the Good Samaritan, 10 St. Clare Avenue, on Tuesday, July 4 at 11 am.
For those who wish in his memory, donations may be made to the Anglican Church of the Good Samaritan.
Carnell’s Funeral Home
329 Freshwater Road
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Anglican Church of the Good Samaritan
10 St. Clare Avenue