The Cordy Clan - January 2009

While the entire world is reflecting on Steve Jobs and the incredible impact he and Apple have had on life as we know it, another legend has passed on.  You may not have known Bill Cordy.  In fact, you probably don’t.  But those of you who have had the pleasure and honour of knowing him, know that he too, is a legend.

The photo above was made the second time we met Grandpa Bill. We had met briefly during a Christmas party at the Cordy’s in a year or so before when Bill had come up with Rob and Irene to spend Christmas with the family that would go on to become our very best friends in Roxby.

The following year, 2009, we went to Grandpa Bill’s place on the river in Moorook for the Australia Day weekend and had a blast skiing, kneeboarding, and just relaxing and chilling out.  It was a special year for Bill that year, celebrating his 90th birthday, surrounded by his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.  We were honoured to celebrate with him and we all went out to a local winery, Banrock Station, for lunch.  “Bring your camera”, Scott said, “We’ll get a big family photo.”  As it turns out, this was our first family portrait.

I remember his son, Rob, and grandsons, Scott and Jamie, telling some of their favourite stories about Bill during the birthday celebrations at the river that weekend.  Coming of age stories.  Learning to drive stories.  Farming stories.  Relationship stories.  A lotta love in those stories.

You can see Bill there in the middle of it all.  As bright and cheerful as ever.  Sharp as a whip.  I mean this guy had it going on.  He was always the first one up in the morning at the river and you could hear him whistling as he went about his morning.  He would trundle off to the corner store as soon as the papers arrived to get his daily crossword and news fix.  In my family, all of the elders have finished off their days in increasing levels of care, so meeting Bill and seeing him still living life to the fullest at 90 was refreshing.

We caught up with Bill several more times over our time in Australia and always the same cheerful attitude.  Always made us feel welcome in his home.

It came as a shock to learn a week or so ago that this mighty fellow had been taken down by a heart attack that laid him up in the Loxton hospital.  Our hearts and thoughts were with our friends as they all converged on the river to be with him.  Up and down he went, but after a week he was looking pretty good.  The doctors weren’t going to let Bill go back to his home though, those days were over.  Not that Bill was particularly pleased with that.  Not a nursing home kinda guy, you know.

Then, this morning it came as a shock  to receive a note that Bill had passed during the night (our night, Australia’s arvo).

We wish you god’s speed Bill.  You will be remembered forever.  You will be missed.  You will not be forgotten.  You made your mark.

I invite all of you who knew Bill, or were touched by him, to say a few words in the comments below… (you might have to hit the jump to get to the comments)