Bill Good

Memorial Service for William Sydney Good

Saturday, February 3, 2001

Promontory Estates Clubhouse,

6001 Promontory Road, Chilliwack
William Sydney Good
Born April 4, 1933 in Calgary Alberta
Died January 26, 2001 in the Chilliwack General Hospital
age: 67

Leaving to mourn his passing:
is loving wife, married September 4, 1954 (Married 46 years) Geraldine Beattie (Gerry)

His children: Richard (Rick) and Laura Good
Susan (Gary) Seperich
Tammy Good
Matthew (Deanna) Good

Grandchildren: Kamille, Mitchell, Jacob and Coleman

And by marriage (Laura): Debra, Wayne and Allison
Bill was our best musician from the 1950 trip. He, along with Ron Collier, were our two most professional musicians. His musicianship stretched from the classics to jazz and everything in between. He was also the member of the 1950 trip who was best loved. He had only friends. He had no enemies. We musicians don’t use the word “Love” in relationship to each other very easy. But it is easy to use that word with Bill. We loved Bill.

Brian Bolam’s Remembrances of Bill Good 

February 3, 2001

My friendship with Bill is truly life-long. It started in 1941, with our early elementary school days at Ridgeway School in North Vancouver. Our fathers both worked in war production in the North Van shipyard and they were friends too.

Bill and I joined the North Vancouver Schools Band about the same time and this led to a close friendship. We traveled with the schools band to far away places like Hope and Squamish – our band adventures with the Kitsilano Boys Band took us much farther to Europe and the British Isles and on the 1950 trip, we shared “luggage committee” duties and the billet at my aunt and uncle’s home in Newcastle.
That 1950 trip exposed Bill, especially, to the vaudeville type of showbiz and to the great drummers in the pit bands.
The Good family, Bill came from, was fully supportive of his development as a musician. Bill’s Dad was a little stage struck and not at all shy about putting on costumes and doing vaudeville standup routines and I think that helped develop Bill’s great sense of humor and timing.
Many of you will remember Bill telling the story about “Archibald Asselbroke”. And, he could tell it perfectly time after time.
Bill could play it all. In his early days as a professional musician, it was the “girlie” shows in the tents at the PNE in 1957 and in the 60’s, it was the much more sophisticated “clown band” he played in with me. Bill is thought of by many as a “legit percussionist” but he had many sides to his talent – he played a great “Big Band” drum set and Bobby Harriett always used Bill on his big band jobs and I had the true pleasure of playing with him many times over the years in concert bands and dance bands.
Ted Lazenby, another ex-Kits VSO musician told a wonderful story about Bill in the percussion section of the symphony. It was at a “Pops concert” rehearsal with Arthur Fiedler as guest conductor. Fiedler stopped the orchestra part way thru the piece being rehearsed. He pointed to the percussion section and asked the name of the blond fellow with the huge cymbals. Unnerved at being singled out by the great maestro, a stuttering Bill replied, “b b b Bill Good, sir.”
Fiedler said, “Well Mr. William Good, I would like you and the members of the orchestra to know that you are one of the finest cymbal players I have ever heard.”
I will miss Bill; my friend and fellow musician.
Gerry, my apologies to you and your family, I can’t be with you today. I’ve got a gig in Vernon.
Brian Bolam

Bill Good and the 1950 Trip of the Kitsilano Boys Band

by Gordon Laird

Friday, February 2, 2001

May, 1950 39 “Boys” set out on the adventure of a lifetime. Each of us had graduated from other bands to become members of the famous Kitsilano Boys Band.

This was the first post-war trip of the Band. It was not the first trip to England! The band first traveled there in 1934, and again in 1936. In 1939 the band trip to England was cut short by the commencement of war.

We traveled across Canada by train and the Atlantic on the “H. M. S. Samaria”. When landed in England and then in Holland, to our surprise, we were treated not as ordinary Canadians but as Ambassadors for Canada. The war had been long over for us. It was not long over for the people of England and especially for the people of Holland.

There are now only 33 of the original 39 “Boys” left. Bill Good was the sixth to leave us, following Owen Morse, Walter Goral, Ron Stewart, Jack Hamilton and Bobby Campbell.

Today there are some from that trip here present: Cy Battistoni, Ritchie Brown, Doug Holbrook, Glenn Startup, Arnold Emery, Colin Lee, Norm Mullins, Barrie Gillmore and myself [perhaps this list will be altered a bit at the service].

Bill traveled to England again in 1953 with the band. But it was our 1950 trip who organized reunions. Last August we had a conference phone call from our reunion at Bob Cave’s home in West Vancouver. It was a highlight of that reunion! We all talked with Bill and then we played a number for him over the phone: “Can’t help falling in love”, which was the same number “the Boys” played for Mr. Delamont when he was ill.

The 1950 trip was very special to Bill for another reason. Gerry told me the story: living in Quebec at that time, Geraldine Beattie and her Mother and Father were returning from England on the H. M. S. Samaria. Gerry was required to sit with her strict parents, and Bill sat alone at the next table. The English waiter came to Bill and pointed out the attractive girl at the next table. “Would you like me to introduce you?” “Sure,” said Bill. That introduction was the beginning of the greatest Band love story, because they were married four years later.

You may wonder why I was asked to officiate at this service. I did not consider myself religious when I was going twice a week to Kits Band practices at General Gordon. Sure, I attended Sunday school and Glenn Startup and I were in “King’s Men” at Ryerson Church.

Mr. D. was very religious, but he did not wear it on his sleeve. We all knew his upbringing was in the Salvation Army and we knew he attended Crosby United in Vancouver, because he took us to play at their evening services on occasion.

It was really through songs like: “Abide with Me” and “The Lost Chord” that we got an inkling of the depth of Arthur’s feelings about religion. And we never heard the words. We do remember him saying, “Any Band can play a March, but only a good band can perform a Hymn Toon!”

When I was minister at St. Andrew’s United in Maple Ridge I got I renewed my friendship with Walter Goral of the 1950 trip. When Walter died we got a band together for the service. Bill played with us, and must have carried a memory of that service ever since. The family requested that we play “Abide with Me” and “the Lost Chord”. It was band members, especially Brian Bolam, who wanted us to play “Can’t Help Falling in Love”.

We were all touched deeply by Arthur Delamont and by the music he put on our stands. When we play “Abide with Me,” please listen to our playing, because we are showing you our hearts!


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