Michel Dallaire
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483 Broadway Street
PO Box 791
Haileybury, ON P0J 1K0
Phone: 705-672-3122
Fax: 705-672-3267

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Obituary for William "Bill" James Sutton

William "Bill" James  Sutton
William (Bill) James Sutton died at home in Cobalt, Ontario, at age 92, with his family by his side, after a brief battle with cancer.

He leaves behind his beloved wife of 67 years, Margaret (Burk) Sutton and his loving children Peggy Neuhart (Peter), Stuart Sutton (Rose), Michael Sutton (Beth), Judy Sutton and Heather Sutton (Morrie); his grandchildren Michael, Jenn, Matthew, Lisa, Tim, Amy, Christopher, Katie, Erin, Jennifer, Emily, Megan, Erica, Andrew and Rebecca; 22 Great Grandchildren; his brother Arnold Sutton (Gail); his brother-in-law Carl Burk and sisters-in-law Grace Darling (Al) and Nonie Burk; the rest of his extended family and many good friends along the way. He is predeceased by his brothers Roy and Lee Sutton and sister Birdie Daley and bothers-in-law Ken Burk and Clarence Daley and sisters-in-law Mary Burk and Janette Sutton.

Born and raised in Harris Township, the son of Charles and Elizabeth (Waugh) Sutton, he spent his last 62 years a resident of Cobalt, Ontario.

In his early years, Bill worked on the family farm before leaving at age 16 to work the lumber camps in Ontario; ranched and panned for gold in western Canada. He returned home in his 20's where he would eventually begin his career working for various Silver and Gold mines in the Cobalt area.

Music brought Marg and Bill together when he brought his guitar to her family home. Music continued to be a big part of their life as they played square dances, waltzes and polkas in family basements and local halls. This instilled the love of music in their children and grandchildren.

He retired at age 67 as the Agnico-Eagle Mine Maintenance Superintendent. During post retirement, he was often consulted and interviewed by Agnico-Eagle regarding the early days of the mining operations in Cobalt. He documented many of the operating properties in the area and also created a video explaining the now-closed ragged chutes hydro-pneumatic air compressor plant. While in his 80's, he wrote 3 books documenting the antics and experiences of his 40+ year career in the various Cobalt mines.

Bill was active in the local community: coaching and refereeing minor hockey; active member of the tri-town planning board; recruiting lifeguards at Bass Lake; and advocating for the new Coleman water line.

His favourite past times where hunting and fishing. In his younger days, he would put a canoe on his back in the summer or snowshoe miles in the winter to get to his favorite fishing grounds. He hunted moose out of camps he built on Planet Lake and later Gullrock Lake, bagging his last moose at the age of 88. He continued to hunt and fish until age 91.

Bill was extremely resourceful and could make anything with his woodworking tools and welding torches in his shop. In 1964 he made his first snowmobile at the same time Bombardier was building their first snow machine. He made almost all the furniture, doors, trim, picture frames, etc. in their house as well as customized fish huts he would keep on various local lakes.

Of all the lives he touched, his proudest achievement in life was his family: his wife, Margaret, who supported him in all his glory during his heyday, and lovingly supported him physically during their last days together; and his children of whom he was extremely proud.

Anyone else with stage 4 cancer would have gone quietly into the night, but Bill was still telling stories to the enjoyment of all his listeners.

He died as he lived: he wrote his own rules and made everything he could with his bare hands while blazing his own trail. And if you said he couldn’t do it, he would make sure he could.

He lived 1000 years in the 92 calendar years we had with him because he attacked life; whether it was taming wild broncos in his 20's, building multiple moose camps or fish shacks, teaching his children valuable life skills, or making fully functional machines out of scrap metal, haywire and creativity.

The family would like to thank all the nurses, care-givers, neighbours and friends who allowed Bill to spend his last days at home surrounded by his immediate family.

Loving husband, father, miner, cowboy, outdoorsman and jack-of-all-trades paddled upstream for his last time on Tuesday, July 30, 2019. Except for the fish, partridge, moose and wood-burning trees around Northern Ontario, he will be missed.

Bill’s ashes will be placed to rest beside his grandfather Waugh in Lakeview Cemetery on Monday, August 26th at 3pm. A celebration of life will follow from 4-6 at BUFFAM LEVEILLE FUNERAL HOME, Haileybury. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Cobalt-Coleman Food Bank or The Canadian Cancer Society. Online condolences accepted at
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