William Tonkinson | Chris O'Brien Lifehouse

Born to Christina & Peter on the 21st of December 1943 in Forbes, New South Wales. In 1948 Bill and his mother moved to Sydney. He was but a toddler at 5 years.

Together they lived in Bondi where at the ripe old age of 5 – Bill would plan his escape from daycare by standing at the fence and asking anyone passing by to ‘get me out of here!’

When he hit his teens, Bill was a bit of a rebel. His initiation was to ride his motorbike through the local milkbar. Authorities gave him an ultimatum to ‘join the army’ or ‘end up in the wrong side of the law’. Bill chose the army – an excellent choice under the circumstances – he was 18 years of age.

Whilst he was in the army he met the love of his life on a blind date. Carol was only 15 (I am sure some of you are playing in your mind ‘she was only 15, only 15 ….. (it was actually only 16 by Dr Hook) – the young ones these days won’t know that song! Story has it that Carol fell madly in love with Bill in his uniform. They married 2 years later and had 3 boys – William, Brett & Craig.

He was sent to Vietnam in 1966 where he sailed off on the ship called the “Sydney”. He spent 10 months in Vietnam and had to return because he was wounded by shrapnel.

He was a hard-working man, working up to 3 jobs at a time to make sure his children did not want for anything. He was a ‘jack of all trades’ – good cook, handyman, taxi driver, bus driver and the perfect husband, father and most proud grandfather.

After his retirement, the first of his grandchildren arrived. 3 Grandsons in 6 months, a son from each son and ultimately four more grandchildren- 7 in total. Bill loved dressing up as Santa for the kids and looked forward to hosting Christmas at home.
Sadly, his health gradually deteriorated which affected his mobility. This led to him being placed in aged care.

He is now sadly missed & always loved & remembered.

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