William John Carpenter

1942 ~ 2019 (age 77)


Calgary, 1942 – Lethbridge, 2019

Bill passed away peacefully on Saturday, October 19 at the age of 77. He is lovingly remembered by his children, Brook (Sylvia) and Lara (Dan) and his loving partner, Andrea.  He was proud and loving grandpa to Hanna and Julia and fondly remembered by Andrea’s children and grandchildren. He is also survived by his sister Carole (Kjell), brothers Bob (Raymonde) and Michael (Pam), along with nine nieces and one nephew.

He was predeceased by his former wife Marion (mother of Brook and Lara), his parents, Queenie and Gordon and his sister Cheryl.

Bill moved to an acreage known as the “Soldiers' Settlement” in the village of Bowness with his parents at the end of World War 11.  Much of his youth was spent exploring the hills south of Bowness where “The Big Rock” (a glacial erratic) is located. He played rugby from the age of 17 to 29 and continued to meet with the team on a monthly basis.

In his career with wildlife management, Bill worked as a biologist, and a Senior Environment Policy Advisor for the Executive Secretariat of the Government of The Northwest Territories. In 1975, he opened and operated the first veterinary clinic in the NWT. At the same time, he began his work of raising and breeding the indigenous Canadian Inuit Dog which was then on the brink of extinction. In 1986, the first dogs from the “William J. Carpenter Canadian Eskimo Dog Research Foundation” were registered with the Canadian Kennel Club.

In 1982, he and his partner John Bayly, constructed a wilderness retreat, Moraine Point Lodge, on the remote west shore of Great Slave Lake. For 5 ½ years, Bill was the Environmental Director for the Metis Nation of the NWT.  He was responsible for writing the research proposal on “Variance in Traditional Food Use in Metis/Dene Communities”.  In 1997, Bill was appointed to the position of World Wildlife Fund-Canada's Regional Coordinator to manage the WWF “Endangered Spaces Campaign” in the NWT.

In 2002, he was one of the northern recipients of the Queen's Golden Jubilee Medal. In semi-retirement, he consulted for the WWF as the NWT Senior Advisor to WWF Canada, focusing primarily on the proposed (and now approved) Edehzhie National Wildlife Area. In 2018, Bill became a Board member of the Bowness Historical Society and was the lead on “Paskapoo's Big Rock Park” interpretive sign project.

A celebration of life will take place next June, details to come.

You were one of a kind Bill and you shall be remembered.

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