THE funeral took place yesterday (Wednesday) of much-loved and highly respected Kilskeery and Trillick man, W.R.A. (Bill) Wilson. 
Described as a true gentleman, with a kind and generous nature, he was considered a ‘patriarch of the community’. He was a man who above all else put his family first.
Bill’s name is synonymous with auctioneering, compering, growing show vegetables, ploughing and organizing community and charity events.  
Throughout his lifetime he demonstrated an enviable ability to turn his hand to anything.
Born on the family farm at Girgadis, Trillick on April 7, 1930, a strong work ethos was instilled in Bill from a very young age.
The second son of a family of nine to parents Thomas E.Wilson and Letitia (née Loane), before turning 16, he took his father’s horse and plough to a ploughing match, famously returning home later as the newly crowned Champion Ploughman.
A devoted member of Kilskeery Parish Church all his life, Bill was baptised, confirmed and married in the church where he was laid to rest yesterday.
Passionate about the church choir, up until last year Bill was its longest serving member, having joined at the tender age of eight. In 1951 he joined the Select Vestry and was the secretary for 35 years.
He and his beloved wife, Winifred Grace (née Armstrong) celebrated their 64th wedding anniversary last year. They marked their Diamond wedding anniversary four years ago by renewing their wedding vows.
The couple have five children: David, who lives in Pennsylvania; William, London; Maurice, Ballinamallard; Caroline, New York; and Andrew, London. They are also the proud grandparents to 11 grandchildren.
According to his children, He was a very giving man, serving the church, community and charities over the years. 
He was also a man who never shirked from responsibility, a natural in everything he turned his hand to. 
Having won multiple trophies and cups along the way, he was very proud to become the President and Chairman of the Fermanagh and Tyrone Ploughing Society, too.
Known for his natural sense of humour, he became a popular choice as an MC at various charity events and concerts.
“He was a natural speaker and storyteller” says his daughter, Caroline, “and always has a twinkle in his eye when telling a joke”.
Bill was also a competitor and besides taking part in ploughing matches, he also successfully turned his hand to exhibiting his own home grown vegetables at agricultural shows.
For many years he was also an announcer at the Fermanagh County Show.
Describing him as a role model for life, his son David said: “He was a genuine man who always saw the good in everyone.
“He always taught us: ‘Treat people the same way you would want to be treated’. That was something that he lived by.”
Amongst his many other achievements in life, Bill was a proud member of the Ulster Special Constabulary for 25 years and the RUC Reserve for 22 years.
He was awarded The British Empire Medal for his service to the community in her Majesty’s New Year’s Honours List last year. 
According to his children, above all else, Bill was a family man, who “always spoke from the heart” and will be very sadly missed by all.