In memory of those who have Crossed the Bar


John Walter (Bill) Fitsell




Born: 25 Jul 1923, Lindsay, Ontario


Died: 03 Dec 2020, Kingston, Ontario


FITSELL, John Walter (Bill) - reporter, author, sport historian, died on Thursday, December 3, 2020 at 97 years of age at Kingston General Hospital. He celebrated his 75th wedding anniversary on October 12, 2020 this year with his wife Barbara (nee Robson). Bill was born in Barrie and raised in Lindsay, Ontario on July 25, 1923. He was predeceased by his parents John Charles 'Jack' Fitsell and Beatrice (nee Exell), his sister Ruth Anderson brother Stan Fitsell of Lindsay and Frank Fitsell of Milton as well as one grandson Charles Berry.


At age 19, Bill served in the Canadian Navy in WWII, first on the ST FRANCIS and then on the OUTREMONT in the North Atlantic.


He met Barbara Robson in Sydney, Nova Scotia, married and brought her to Lindsay, Ontario where Bill began his journalism career at the Lindsay Post. He worked of the Kingston Whig Standard for 30 years as District Editor where Kingstonians may remember his column Bill Fitsell's PEOPLE.


As an author, Bill penned several books: Hockey's Captains, Colonels and Kings, James T. Sutherland: The Grand Old Man of Hockey, How Hockey Happened and Hockey's Hub with Mark Potter. Bill also served as President of the Hockey Hall of Fame, President of the Kingston Historical Society and he was a proud Founder and President of the Society of International Hockey Research that now has a membership of over 500.


He is survived by his five daughters, Carol Anne and husband Larry, Oakville; Diane, Kingston; Jo-Ann, Denver, Colorado; Gaylan, Gananoque; and Jan, Burlington; 11 grandchildren, Allyson, Chucky (deceased), Cory, Michael, Peter, Gretta, Sam, Sara, Megan, Katie, Madelaine and Anna; 7 great-randchildren, Emmett, Colin, Julia, Andy, Olivia, Alyssa and Sydney; and 5 great-great-grandchildren, Takoda, Jaelynn, Harlow, Silas and Enzo.


Cremation will take place soon and due to Covid restrictions a celebration will take place later in 2021. The family is thankful to the kindly staff at Kingston General Hospital, Connell 3 and Davie 5.


Donations to the Kingston International Hockey Hall of Fame appreciated. (The Whig Standard 05 Dec 2020)


Ships served in:





Crossed the Bar Index