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Timmins police, fur council mourn the loss of long-time community volunteer

A nationally-recognized and long-time Timmins volunteer and trapper passed away this week at the age of 87.

Born in 1936, William 'Bill' Russell passed away Sept. 25, his obituary said.

William 'Bill' Russell was a founding member of Timmins Fur Council. (Supplied)

"Following in his dad’s footsteps, Bill started hunting and trapping at a very young age, going on to be one of the founding members of the Timmins Fur Council in 1968 and volunteering nationally with the Fur Institute of Canada," his obituary said.

"It cannot be overstated how Bill’s efforts helped shape our community, from social service to environmental and wildlife management and industry."

Russell remained an active member of the fur council for more than 50 years, the organization said in a memorial tribute on social media.

"Bill began trapping as a way to support his family in the 40s and 50s. In his lifetime he was a trapping instructor, volunteer with the Fur Institute of Canada, mentoring thousands of people through the years," Timmins Fur Council said.

When Russell retired from Brewers Retail – now known as The Beer Store -- after working there 25 years, he took up volunteering at various charitable organizations in the small northern Ontario community.

From Oct. 1, 1992, to March 9, 2001, he served as a special constable with Timmins police service.

William 'Bill' Russell Timmins served as a special constable from Oct. 1, 1992, to March 9, 2001. (Timmins Police Service)

"Bill was a firm believer that we all have a responsibility to leave the world a better place than how we found it," his obituary said.

"Living his belief, Bill was nationally recognized for his volunteering efforts, volunteering locally with the Lord’s Kitchen, Timmins Food Bank, Knights of Columbus, Legal Aid Timmins, Timmins Local Citizens Committee, and CCAC (to name a few)."

Russell's family is inviting friends to share their best stories of him at the Lessard-Stephens Funeral Home on Oct. 1 from 2-4 p.m.

"Anyone who met him knew that you were guaranteed three things: a big smile, a hilarious joke and a really interesting story," his obituary said.

His funeral is Monday at 1:30 p.m. at St. Anthony's Cathedral.

William 'Bill' Russell Timmins special police constable (Timmins Police Service) Top Stories

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