William John Weigand

October 14, 1928 ~ June 27, 2021

Bill passed away peacefully with his beloved wife Jeri by his side, in Whitehorse, Yukon, the place that filled his heart from the day he arrived in 1946. Later he became a Lifetime Member of the Yukon Order of Pioneers.

 

Bill was born in St. James (Winnipeg), Manitoba, the third child of Edwin and Mary Weigand. He left Winnipeg at a young age after working as a paper carrier for the Winnipeg Free Press and at the Midwest Aircraft Factory.  In Assiniboia he worked at 334 EFTS (Elementary Flying Training School), then in Edmonton and Morinville, Alberta where he was an auto mechanic.

 

Bill arrived in Whitehorse in late fall 1946, at the age of 18, to work at the Army Fire Hall. This began his lifelong love of the Yukon, and all the adventures, the successes, the lasting friendships, and his family, that make up the wonderful life stories that are his legacy. Bill’s wife Sophie came to Yukon in 1948 and their son Darryl and daughter Brenda-Dawne (Buni) were born in Whitehorse. In 1966 Bill met Jeri and they were married in 1968, bringing together all their children that became Bill’s treasured family. 

 

Bill drove all of Yukon’s highways from border to border many times over five decades. He loved the outdoor life in Yukon, camping and fishing on Tagish, Marsh and Fish Lakes, exploring the dusty roads around Dawson City and Atlin, and mining on Bonanza Creek. In his work life over many years Bill was a firefighter, fire officer, fire inspector, a goldsmith who became a co-owner of Murdoch’s Gem Shop in 1965, and later a retail merchant with his wife Jeri with Designers North, and a realtor with ReMax in the 1990’s. Bill was honoured to serve as the Mayor of Whitehorse from 1991 – 1994. In the community over the years he served as Cub Master, (Camp Takhini), President of the Whitehorse Kiwanis Club, the Downtown Business Association, the Yukon Federal Conservative Party, and Chairman of the Yukon Utilities Board, and the first Yukon Liquor Board. In 1998 Bill was honoured with the Rotary Paul Harris Fellow Award and in 2005 he was presented the Yukon High Commissioners Award for Public Service”.

 

Bill and his wife Jeri departed from Whitehorse in 1995 for Xining, China, and later Beiha, China where they volunteered as foreign experts in business. They were awarded the “Golden Silk Ball Award”, and the prestigious Friendship Award” in 1998.  Bill had wonderful memories of their time in China where they made everlasting friendships.

 

Bill and Jeri settled into a retirement life in Yaletown, Vancouver, and later Steveston, Richmond, B.C.

 

The Yukon always called to Bill, and in 2016 he and Jeri returned to this place of familiarity, where family lived, and friends old and new, and the cycle of the seasons brought the memories full circle for Bill. His favourite season was the fall “when the mountains and forests turned golden”.

 

Bill is survived by the love of his life Jerrine; children Darryl (Sharon), Buni (Andrew), David, Nikki (Grant), Donald (Debra), Teri; grandchildren Dax (Katy), Kate (Ryan), Tristan (Susanne), Jesse (Shayla), Daniel, Stephen (Erika); great grandchildren Tovah, Ethan, Gabriel, Nolan, Violet. Survived by brother Ken (Dawn) and sister Rose of Edmonton and sister Connie of St. Albert, Alberta. He leaves loving extended family: Lynda and Murray, Catherine and Dave, and Gary, Amelia and Victoria. He will be remembered by many friends and family in Whitehorse, Alberta, B.C., Australia and China.  Bill was pre-deceased by his parents, and his older brother Vernon.

 

Special thanks to Catherine, for her friendship, care, and support and to daughter Nikki for being there for Bill and Jeri over the past years. We also thank the wonderful nurses and care teams of Home Care, Thomson Centre and Wind River Hospice House for their gentle, compassionate care and family support during the last days of Bill’s life journey.

 

A celebration of life will take place at a later date. In lieu of flowers a charitable donation can be made to your charity of choice. Condolences can be left at Heritage North Funeral Home webpage.

16 Comments

  1. Donna Clayson

    I am devastated to learn of Bill’s passing. Such a lovely man and totally devoted to wife Jeri. I have fond memories of having lunch with Jeri and Bill and viewing all of their treasures. While growing up in Whitehorse and as an adult I remember numerous comments spoken about the Weigand’s with fondness by all. I attended FH Collins with son Darryl and when buying a house in Whitehorse ensured I went with Darryl. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Such a beautiful family. My sincere condolences to Jeri, family and friends.

    Reply
  2. Sherron Jones

    Condolences to Jeri and family. Thank you for a friendship that lasted more than 50 years. Bill you will be missed and thought of often.

    Bill and Sherron Jones

    Reply
  3. Ione Christensen

    Dear Jeri and family. Another dear friend has gone down the trail. At our age we know this is the natural progression of life but it does not make it any easier. Bill and I were part of the Whitehorse Mayoralty family and shared many battle stories over the years. Our trip to Victoria for the Change of Command of H.M.C.S Whitehorse was a highlight and a fun time. Bill contributed so much to Whitehorse and the Yukon. He loved people and he loved the Yukon. We are all so fortunate the two of you with your family, are apart of our community. Jeri, my heart is with you, losing your life partner is so hard. Know we are all sharing your sorrow and thank you for sharing Bill with us over these many years.
    My Sincere Condolences and Love Ione Christensen

    Reply
  4. Ione Christensen

    Dear Jeri and family. Another dear friend has gone down the trail. At our age we know this is the natural progression of life but it does not make it any easier. Bill and I were part of the Whitehorse Mayoralty family and shared many battle stories over the years. Our trip to Victoria for the Change of Command of H.M.C.S Whitehorse was a highlight and a fun time. Bill contributed so much to Whitehorse and the Yukon. He loved people and he loved the Yukon. We are all so fortunate the two of you with your family, are apart of our community. Jeri, my heart is with you, losing your life partner is so hard. Know we are all sharing your sorrow and thank you for sharing Bill with us over these many years.
    My Sincere Condolences and Love Ione Christensen

    Reply
    • NIKKI BUCKLER

      See you later my wonderful Father, I’m so heartbroken. You taught me so much but most of all how to be a good person & not to sweat the small stuff. You were such a gentleman & just an awesome human being. I’ll miss you so much everyday.
      Love your daughter Nikki ❤

      Reply
  5. Jo Davignon

    I was sadden to hear of the passing of this lovely gentleman, Bill. I wish to extend my sincere condolences to the Weigand Family. I hope the many years of memories will ease you thru this difficult time. I wish Bill a good journey to the other side. Thinking of you all.

    Reply
  6. CHEN Yuhua

    Dear Jeri and family,
    We were shocked to hear the sad news of the passing of our dearest Bill, a great father, grand father and great grand father, as well as a good friend. We are in great sorrow and we still can’t believe that we have lost such a nice man we have ever met in our life. His kind words, his smile, his humor, his gentleman’s demeanour, his kindness, his generosity, his tolerance, his good deeds, his deepest love for Jeri and care for everyone in his family and us. We are also very sorry that we could not do anything for help in the past couple of years when he was suffering from disease. His contribution to Qinghai is still rememberedby Qinghai people, and his proposal on developing tourism in Qinghai Province, China has becoming fruitful.
    We are truly grateful to the support and love he rendered us in the past years since we got to know each other in 1994. We will always cherish the unforgettable happy memories of him.
    Though we know it is a great loss to you, also to us, we sincerely hope that you can restrain your grief and recover from it soon.
    May he rest in peace!
    Sincerely yours,
    Chen Yuhua,
    Liu Hao,
    Susan &
    Chen’s family

    Reply
  7. Rob and Glynis Steer

    Bill has been a friend of two generations of our family since our parents met him and Jeri in a hotel in Stellenbosch, South Africa in 1980. We shall always remember his friendship and kindness over all these years. He was a wonderful tour guide and advisor when we visited The Yukon in 1981. Over the years Bill kept in contact with letters, Christmas cards, photos and emails updating us on his and Jeri’s amazing life. We remember Bill as a proud parent, supportive and loving husband, a gentleman and a loyal friend.
    Bill, we’ll miss you!
    To Jeri and the family we send our sincere condolences.

    Rob and Glynis – Johannesburg

    Reply
  8. Richard & Maxine Gunoff

    Our deepest condolences to Jeri and the family from Richard and Maxine Gunoff.
    We spent so many happy times with Jeri & Bill. They have been our dearest and closest friends for many years.
    So many happy times we`ve spent travelling with them, visiting the Yukon , visiting the westcoast, as well as having them visit us here in Kelowna. They are some of the happiest
    and fun moments of our lives.
    When the distance and age became a factor for travelling, we knew Bill & Jeri made the right move to be closer to their family. Over the years we have spent many hours on phone calls and emails sharing our golden years together.
    We will miss you Bill and the memories we`ve shared will always be close to our heart.
    With Love and Sympathy,
    Maxine & Dick

    Reply
  9. Ron & Jana Seidel - Calgary, AB

    Jeri, our hearts go out to you and your family on the passing of your beloved Bill.
    You both have been best friends to my parents and welcomed Ron and I into your lives with open arms.
    We are forever grateful for all the cards, emails and photos we`ve exchanged over the years.
    Bill had become quite the writer of emails and exchanging photos sharing in their new home over the past few years.
    We feel so gateful to have known him and be part of his life.
    With deepest sympathy,
    Ron & Jana

    Reply
  10. Elayne Sayney

    My prayers and heartfelt wishes to to the family. Heaven has another angel.

    Reply
  11. Blair and Arlyne Ledingham

    Hi Jeri,
    So sorry to learn that Bill has passed away. He was a marvellous person and we enjoyed the times we spent together in Whitehorse and then meeting you both again when we were all in Maui.
    Many years ago you came to our house in Tsawwassen and we brought in the New Year and we all wrote something brilliant and put it in a jar and buried it in the back yard.
    All happy memories of the both of you. A very sad time for you and all your family and we send our deepest sympathy and love.
    Blair and Arlyne Ledingham

    Reply
  12. Martina Burkitt

    Dear Jeri & Family
    So sorry to hear of the passing of a true gentleman.
    What an amazing person and what a remarkable life. We feel so fortunate that we got to know Bill.
    We shall always remember the years Bill kept in contact with letters and photos from China.
    With warm thoughts and prayers,
    Tina and Patrick

    Reply
  13. Tony Gonda

    I am saddened to hear of the passing of Bill. My condolences to Jeri and family. He was such a fine gentleman! My interactions with him in business and friendship were a wonderful combination of sincerety and quiet humour. He was a great part of the Yukon!

    Reply
  14. Brad & Deb Colpitts

    Our condolences to the family, especially Darryl who we still consider to be a good freind although it has been a few years since we have seen each other. I know how highly he thought of his father. We still miss the Yukon very much. We understand the incredible pull it has on people who discover its many charms like Bill and his family.
    Brad & Deb Colpitts
    Peterborough

    Reply
  15. Beverley Keyes

    Dear Jeri, I think it would be called “serendipity”. I finally ordered your book and decided to contact you to let you know. We had great memories of spending time with you and your amazing husband when you lived in Steveston. If you would like to contact me, my email is blkeyes@shaw.ca.
    Our sincere sympathy for your loss.
    Beverley Keyes

    Reply

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