November 11, 2022
Bill Cannell passed away peacefully at home on November 11th at the age of 92. He leaves behind his beloved wife of 68 years Norma comforted in knowing that she will be supported by their daughters Lynda and Leslie and son-in-law Jim Titus.
Bill was born on June 2, 1930 in Douglas, Isle of Mann where he was raised with his two siblings (John and Florence) by his Manx father George Donald Cannell and his Scottish-born mother Janet. His love of motorcycles developed early on, and his passion was fueled by the annual Isle of Mann TT races. Anxious for adventure and a better life for bringing up a family, Bill immigrated to Canada at the age of 24 with his young bride to be Norma and set down roots in Vancouver.
Bill was a “go-getter” who dedicated himself to building a wonderful life for his family. He went to school and became a Certified General Accountant as he wanted the background to be a better businessman. His love of cars and motorcycles eventually led him into the automotive industry where his career really evolved. As the owner and operator of Richmond Honda and a variety of other car dealerships and repair shops, Bill loved creating opportunities for motivated young people to find their footing and establish themselves. Widely recognized by his peers as a pioneer in the car business Bill was a visionary for the auto mall concept and the development of the Richmond Auto Mall. He always enjoyed “talking cars” and wandering around vintage car shows.
Bill was an exceptional conversationalist and, in his retirement, liked nothing better than going into a pub or sitting on a park bench talking with people. He was an accomplished Toastmaster, a voracious reader, an engaged member of Probus, a year-round golfer, an aficionado of Formula One racing, built and flew model airplanes, and enjoyed playing his harmonica. One of his best memories as a father was single-handedly taking his two young children on a cruise ship to Hawaii after sending his wife ahead on a plane to enjoy a week of golf on her own.
Our family acknowledges with sincere gratitude the dedicated and compassionate care Bill received through his last few months in his home at Amica White Rock. The nursing and care teams are simply outstanding.
A private family ceremony has been held and extended family, friends and colleagues are encouraged to share their condolences and memories below.
I am so sorry to just hear of Bill’s passing. He was a remarkable man who I met through White Rock Toastmasters in 1990. He was a stickler for proper protocol & never let us get away with anything other than our best. I so enjoyed his speeches & learning of his life, family & hobbies. Bill showed us what a dapper dresser he was, a man right out of the GQ magazine. His kind, honest, thoughtful & insightful way of connecting with people made him a person to want to listen to. Bill, you will be missed amongst all your Toastmaster friends. My thoughts to Norma & his daughter xox
Despite the distance and for so many years, we have been keeping contact. Every time I spent my vacation in B.C., it was a pleasure meeting you. I'll never forget these moments. Thank you Bill! I miss you. My condolences go to you, dear Norma, Leslie, Lynda and Jim. Yvonne from Switzerland
So sorry to hear of Bills passing. A kind and gentle-man. My heart goes out to Norma and family. Nothing done or said can completely take away the pain of grief but over time, hopefully, the wonderful memories you made will comfort more and more. I wish you the best. Love Sarah
Dear Norma, Lesley and Lynda, So sad to hear of Bill’s passing, what a wonderful gentleman he was. I shall miss our chats by the bench in the park, and at Nico Wynd. My thoughts and prayers are with you all at this sad time. RIP Bill, till we meet again on that beautiful golf course in Heaven, your friend Margaret Watson.
We were so sorry to hear of Bills passing. Maureen especially hopes you will all manage the sad event. We remember our baby sitting exchange days on Southgate many moons ago. How time passes. Love to you all.
We were neighbors to Bill and Norma for 3+ years and will miss his cheerful greetings and friendly chats! Sending our deepest condolences and big hugs to Norma and family!
Dearest Lynda, after reading all the comments it reminded me of how you spoke about your father. So many lives he touched with his gentle ways and good conversation. Although I never met him I enjoyed hearing you speak about how wonderful, caring and how easy going he was. Even when he was not feeling well you would tell us how positive your visits were with him. Our condolences to your entire family. You’re mum and your dad had such wonderful life together. Much love Cathy and Gail
Bill was a very special man and will be very missed! I always enjoyed the family get togethers that Leslie’s parents were a part of. I so got a kick out of Bill’s great sense of humour. Deepest condolences to all. ❤️
Bill was a kind, considerate man and an avid storyteller. He cared deeply for his family. As a neighbour and good friend I like to think of him out enjoying his daily walk with Norma; greeting the neighbours with his smile and perhaps a wee dog or two by his side. You will be missed Bill....you will be missed. Love to the family, Doug and Carole
I use to tell Bill I was his adopted daughter whether he wanted me or not because I loved him and Norma so very much. I loved all his stories about his childhood in the Isle of Mann and his great harmonica skills. He raised two beautiful daughters and his love affair with Norma was unmatched. He may be gone from this earth but he is with me every day in my heart.
I met Bill & Norma & Augie on the Semiahmoo trail 6 years ago. We shared many conversations & exchanges each time we met. From the trail we decided to have tea together as we had so much to converse, knowing so many of the same friends. From tea dates we decided to go to lunch which included some of our mutual friends. My visits continued at their beautiful home at The Beverley with good conversation & fun. Bill & Norma always spoke of memorable times & special outings with their daughters Lynda & Leslie. When I met the girls & felt I knew them from all the stories Bill always shared about their younger years with horses & schooling & their careers & travels & beloved dogs. The move to The Amica was a change for both but Bill was still very sharp despite some health issues. Bill always was a true gentleman & wonderful husband & proud father & so full of life keeping up on current world affairs. Bill will be missed by many people who were very fond of him. ❤️
Please accept my deepest sympathy for the loss of Bill. Our thoughts go out to you and your family during this difficult time. May you find some comfort in the lifetime of incredible memories you have❤️❤️
Bill was like a second father to me. I met him in 1990 at his 60th birthday party . He had just retired , having sold his Richmond Honda business . Bill and I had a love for cars , planes motorcycles and boats. I have so many good memories of him and I at air shows , car shows , and motorcycle events. Norma and Bill enjoyed many evenings and dinners out on our boat . My parents got along so well with Norma and Bill and we had many wonderful times together . Bill truly wanted to help people he cared about . His wisdom and guidance to me in my business and personal life was profound and he had such an amazing impact on my life of which I am so grateful for . We had so many wonderful trips to Palm Springs , Hawaii and we even persuaded Norma to get on a cruise ship to Alaska for my 50th birthday. I appreciated and loved him so much and will miss all our wonderful talks. I Cherish the time I had with this amazing man and will miss him every day .
Fortunate enough to have known Bill for several years through golfing at Nico Wynd What a wonderful gentleman. We miss you , Bill .
We knew Bill was a man of many talents but playing the harmonica surprised us! We met Bill through Leslie and Jim Titus. We shared some boat trips together, good food, and a little wine. We remember Bill as having such a love of life and family, especially his 3 girls. Successful is so many ways and yet so humble. He passed on some of these best attributes to his daughters. So he lives on. God Bless Laura and Gary Burns
Dear Norma, Lynda, Leslie & family My sincerest condolences and prayers are with all of you during this difficult time. The loss of a husband & father is very difficult. Bill left a great legacy dedicating his energies to both family & community. Sincerely, Brian & Diane Filsinger
Please accept my sincere condolences on the passing of your father. Mr. Cannell, as I knew him from our younger years in Richmond, was quite an influential person in our community and he is well remembered. It's good to see that his family and friends continued to grow and to bring much happiness in life.
Please accept my sincere condolences on the passing of your father (Mr. Cannell) as I knew him from our younger years in Richmond. He was quite an influential person in our community and he is well remembered. It's good to see that his family and friends continued to grow and to bring much happiness in life.
Dear Norma. My deepest condolences to you and your family. Bill was such a nice kind man and had a great sense of humour. Debbie said she bought her first Volvo because he recommended it. The children remember going to your house to see the koi pond. We will all miss him. It's been a while since we've been in touch. I hope you are doing well. Maybe when you feel up to it we can get in touch and catch up. Love Jill.
I was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Bill Cannell. As you get older, you look back and remember who the people were in your life who helped shape your future and Bill Cannell was definitely that to me. As mentioned in his obituary - he was truly a special individual. My sincere message of sympathy to Norma, Lynda, Leslie and Jim. I hope words and prayers will give you strength and help comfort you during this time of grief. My most sincere condolences.
Our friendship with Bill goes back over 30 years from our golfing days in Richmond. When he and Norma moved to South Surrey, nothing was going to deter this friendship because we followed them and built a house right across the street. Now we were not only friends but neighbours as well! Always the gentleman and gifted conversationalist, he will be dearly missed. Our condolences to Norma, Lynda, Leslie and Jim.
As a member of the ARA staff team, I was always treated with kindness & respect by Bill during his tenure on the Board. He was a true gentleman. Condolences to his family
Bill was a wonderful husband to Norma and loving father to Leslie and Linda. I really enjoying spending time with him and Norma when they visited Leslie, Jim and Augie in La Quinta each winter. We were also fortunate to visit Bill and Norma in their home in White Rock. He will be missed and remembered fondly by so many friends and family. A very special man indeed! He leaves a lasting legacy in his beautiful family of children, grand children, and great grandchildren. Love from Sue and King
I did not know BILL long, but I really enjoyed visiting with him and I enjoyed our talks. I will miss him and his friendly big smile
Dear Norma & Family, It has been an honour and a true pleasure getting to know you and Bill over the past few years. I so very much enjoyed our chats on the bench in the park and in your lovely condo. Bill shared so many nuggets of knowledge and experience and they will stay with me forever. He will always hold a special spot in my heart and I miss him a lot. With love and a hug, Alda
Bill was a true gentle man with a smile always. He was such a great loving person, we will all miss him a lot. We are really blessed to know him as a person and as a friend. From Shalini and AJ.
Bill was a special special gentleman. A wonderful father husband and friend to so many. So blessed to have known him and we will miss his friendly smile. Lots of love Sharon and Daryl