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DR. W.E. ABBOTT (BILL)
Date of Passing: Nov 18, 2019Offer Condolences or Memory
DR. W. E. ABBOTT
On November 18, 2019, Dr. W. E. (Bill) Abbott, aged 92 years, of Winnipeg, MB, passed peacefully at Health Sciences Centre.
He is survived by Nora Abbott, his beloved wife of 67 years, his sister, Elizabeth Scott, and his children, Brad Abbott (Susan Pridham), Sharon Vanderschuit (Wybo), and Fred Abbott (Barbara).
Bill was born and raised in River Heights in Winnipeg. He attended Robert H. Smith Elementary School and Kelvin High School, then earned his BA (1948) and MD (1956) at the University of Manitoba. Like his father Fred, Bill specialized in Obstetrics and Gynecology and practiced at the Abbott Clinic alongside his cousin Edward. They were both proud to continue the legacy of their fathers who founded the clinic in the early 1930s. Bill became Head of the OB/GYN Department at Grace Hospital in 1985. Countless Winnipegers came into this world with Bill's assistance. Grateful patients and their adult offspring would frequently stop him on the street to remind him of their connection. He was well known for his gentle and warm bedside manner --- a trusted and beloved doctor for generations of Winnipeg women and their families.
Lake of the Woods has always held Bill's heart. He grew up on the family's Arcadia Island, exploring the lake, learning every channel and bay. As a teenager, he became a fishing guide for CPR's Devil's Gap Lodge where he fell in love with a lovely young waitress from Kenora, Nora McLeod. They married at St. Alban's Cathedral in Kenora in 1952. After losing the beautiful cottage his parents built in the 1930s to a fire in the 1970s, he rebuilt. Bill's greatest legacy is the unwavering love of the lake he passed on to his children, their spouses, and six grandchildren. One way Bill fostered that love was the wonderful boat trips "down the lake" that he led until last summer. He knew the lake better than we ever will.
Bill loved spending time with family and friends, particularly in the outdoors. In addition to his love of fishing, he was an avid hunter, leading to many excursions with longtime friends to the marshes, sloughs and fields of the prairies. He was a founder of the unique railway boxcar ski village at the base of Holiday Mountain (La Rivière, MB). He and his cousin Ed purchased a retired railway grain car in the late 1960s, however, before renovations were complete a tornado threw the structure into the Pembina River. Undeterred, a slightly used mobile home replaced it and the family's lifelong passion for skiing took hold.
Bill will always be loved and remembered for his positivity, kindness, graciousness and unwavering loyalty to family and friends.
The family would like to thank the staff of Health Sciences Centre 5-GA for their kind and caring support of Bill on his final journey.
A celebration of Bill's life will be held in Winnipeg early in the New Year.
In lieu of flowers, gifts may be made to the W.E. Abbott Memorial Fund at The Winnipeg Foundation, 1350 One Lombard Place, Winnipeg, MB R3B 0X3. Tel 204-944-9474. www.wpgfdn.org
As published in the Winnipeg Free Press on Nov 23, 2019
Condolences & Memories (12 entries)
I was a maternity patient of Dr. Abbott's back in 1977 when he delivered my daughter at the Grace Hospital. I have told countless people since then about what a wonderful, kind, patient, professional, caring doctor he was. My condolences to all his family. - Posted by: Karen S. (Patient) on: Jan 11, 2020
My deepest condolences to Dr. Bill's family and friends. A truly wonderful man who was so modest and kind. I almost died from infection. If Dr. Bill had not intervened when he did, I would not be alive today. May he rest peacefully. - Posted by: Barbara Hales (Former patient) on: Dec 22, 2019
My late husband Wilkie Collins and Bill were Gyro members. Also Wilkie hunted with Bill. We enjoyed the wonderful friendship and hospitality at their summer camp. The loss of Bill will be felt by many as he was a revered Doctor and friend. My deepest sympathy to Nora and family. It was a privilege to know Bill. To Nora, beautiful memories will keep you strong. Rest in peace dear Bill. - Posted by: Carole Collins (Friend ) on: Nov 26, 2019
The times we spent working together in Maternity and the OR at the Grace Hospital will always be etched in my memory. Those were wonderful old days never to be repeated! Goodbye old friend! - Posted by: Unni Nair (Anesthesia Colleague at Grace Hospital) on: Nov 25, 2019
A gentle, confidence inspiring man, “Dr Bill” was loved by his patients. He genuinely cared about your well being. My heartfelt condolences to his family. - Posted by: Grace Hoskin (Former patient) on: Nov 24, 2019
My condolences. - Posted by: E. (Lisa) Harman (N/A) on: Nov 23, 2019
So long old buddy. You will be missed. Enjoy your trip. Tom - Posted by: Thomas Goodhand (my friend and partner with Abbott Clinic) on: Nov 23, 2019
So sad to see this. I thought Bill was the greatest, and truth be known, I seem to recall having a big crush on him when I was about 6 years old! I’ll always remember when I slammed my thumb in your car door, and I wouldn’t let them operate without having my teddy bear. He saved the day when he actually went back to our home and got him for me! Thinking of you all at this difficult time and my sincere condolences go out to you Nora, Sharon, Brad, Fred and your families. - Posted by: Cathy (Gilbert) Therrien (Ex-neighbour / old family friend) on: Nov 23, 2019
Nora and family, please accept my sincerest sympathy on the passing of Bill who was not only a true gentleman but one of the most considerate I have had the pleasure of knowing. - Posted by: Craig Cormack (Friend ) on: Nov 23, 2019
He was my Doctor through a physically difficult part of my life. I reiterate all of the accolades mentioned in his notice! My Sympathy to Family Sherrill (McKay) Stone Campbell River, BC - Posted by: Sherrill Stone (patient) on: Nov 23, 2019
With sincere condolences on the family's loss of this wonderful man. Dr. Abbott was on-call the night I went into labor in 1985 and quickly assessed an impending problem - with his quiet, calm and reassuring way he literally "saved the day" and allowed me to go on to safely deliver my son. Thank you Dr. Abbott for being there. May you, as his family, find peace and comfort in your memories of him and may he RIP as heaven's gain. - Posted by: Lois Middleton (Former Patient) on: Nov 23, 2019
My condolences to everyone who is feeling the pain, and the loss of this great man. He will be sadly missed. By all who knew him. - Posted by: Joe fisher (A friend) on: Nov 23, 2019
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