William F. “Bill” Percival, 83, of Effingham, Illinois, passed away Wednesday, November 30, 2022. Let us see more details about William F. “Bill” and the cause of death in detail.
Who is William F. “Bill”
Bill was born on January 17, 1939, in Effingham, Illinois, the son of Olen and Lucille (Webb) Percival. He married Doris James on December 1, 1957, in Watson Township.
Bill was a devout Christian. He spent many years working at Menard’s as a driver and supervisor for ARC. In addition to becoming a Gideon, he attended Funkhouser United Methodist Church. He liked going to shows for vintage tractors.
The County Line Sodbusters included him as a member. Bill enjoyed working with wood and building things. Reading and creating original products in his wood shop were his two favorite pastimes. Bill never met a stranger and cherished his time with his family and friends.
William F. “Bill” Career Journey
When William F. “Bill” Oxford mentor permitted him to participate in a Royal Geographical Society and London Alpine Club expedition to the Nepal Himalayas in 1950, partly as a mountaineer and partially to investigate land use and soil erosion, his growing career as a biogeographer had a brief interruption.
The expedition’s leader, H. W. Tilman, acknowledged his climbing abilities when he wrote that Bill only fell short of ascending the expedition’s main goal, the 7,525-meter-tall Annapurna IV when he ran out of teammates. However, this achievement was eclipsed when he caught poliomyelitis while working in the lowlands of Nepal.
Although his prolonged rehabilitation in England put paid to Bill’s doctorate, his subsequent lectureships at University College, London, and the University of Canterbury, where he was noted for his rapport with undergraduates, indicate that his academic career had not suffered too much. Nor was his involvement in land conservation curtailed, to judge from his foundation membership of the Mount Cook National Park Board from 1955-1960.
Nevertheless, Bill’s attention progressively turned from land care to student welfare over the course of the following ten years. This was mostly a reflection of his unquenchable altruism, which his buddy and fellow “super tramper,” Ed Hillary, identified as his “biggest strength.” This was philanthropy in the pre-commercial sense of enjoying, relating to, and assisting others.
He was to return eight times to the Himalayas, where his survival had depended on the Sherpas who piggybacked and carried him on a stretcher during the arduous journey to medical evacuation. His near-death experience in Nepal may also have had an impact on his reorientation.
It must also have been underpinned by Geraldine (Gerry) Ulrich, his attractive, gracious, and capable fellow Canterbury student, who had followed him to England, assisted his slow recovery, married him, mothered his children, and helped him in the late 1950s to balance his full-time teaching and research career with reorganizing and civilizing Rolleston House, a cluster of Canterbury University student dormitories.
Bill was happy to impose parts of the University’s favored residential model’s “meal and fellowship” ritual on an initially perplexed student body, as evidenced by his Secretary ship of the Association of Rhodes Scholars in Australia in the 1980s.
From the Time of his Retirement
When Bill retired, which was appropriately celebrated with an OAM for his contributions to the University, he immediately got to work on a number of charitable endeavors that he had already hinted at by organizing Bruce Hall students to deliver meals on wheels on the weekends and serving on the board of the then-ANU Credit Union.
He used his finely honed interpersonal and organizational skills as a board member and treasurer of the Northside Community Service, first at Corroboree Park, Ainslie, and then at Dickson, where he assisted in setting up and running the Majura Community Centre. After that, he continued to volunteer, taking the elderly to Corroboree Park once a week and preparing and hosting their magnificent midwinter and Christmas feasts.
The main focus of his endeavors in his later years was to be the ACT Palliative Care Society which he served unstintingly until days before he succumbed to cancer.
Cause of Death
William F. “Bill” Percival, 83, of Effingham, Illinois, passed away Wednesday, November 30, 2022, at Lakeland Rehabilitation Health Care Center in Effingham, surrounded by his family.
His wife, Doris Percival of Effingham, his sons, Fred (Tonna) Percival and Darren (Heather) Percival, both of rural Effingham, his granddaughter, Mindy (Kris) McClelland of rural Mason, his grandson, Chad (significant other, Rylee Case) Percival of rural Effingham, his great-granddaughter, Ivy, as well as numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins are left
Olen and Lucille Percival, his sister Betty (Percival) Ruffner, as well as Lee and Nellie James, his father, and mother-in-law, predeceased him.
A memorial service will be held at Noon Wednesday, December 7, 2022, at Johnson Funeral Home in Effingham.
Burial will be in Arborcrest Memorial Park in Effingham. Visitation will be held from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 Noon Wednesday before the service at the funeral home.
Memorials may be made to the donor’s choice.
Follow us on Twitter for more updates