Bill Payette, a member of one of Chapleau's pioneer and most involved families in community life, was presented with an Estwing Golden Hammer in recognition of his 50 years of service in the hardware store industry.
Bill, the son of Mr. and Mrs. D.O. Payette, started his career in 1939, when his father, the president of Smith and Chapple Ltd., had him help out in the toy department for the Christmas season. Bill was 13 at the time.
For the next two summers, he delivered parcels from the store by travelling around Chapleau on his bicycle, which he had paid for by the end of the first summer.
In 1941, his father suggested he leave school temporarily to work in the store as help was difficult to find because of World War II.
Bill was required to help out in various departments including the funeral service, and subsequently became manager of the hardware department, a position he held until Smith and Chapple Ltd. closed on May 7, 1987.
He joined the staff of Collins Home Hardware on May 11, 1987, according to a newspaper report.
Accompanying Doug Collins to a Fall buying market and a semi annual shareholders' meeting of Home Hardware, Bill was presented with an Estwing Golden Hammer in recognition of his service to the industry. The presentation was made by Walter Hachborn, president of Home Hardware.
According to an article in the Watertown Daily Times the Estwing Golden Hammer is a "prestigious industry award" which "celebrates individuals who have provided exceptional service in the field of hardware and home improvement services for more than 50 years".
Always community minded, Bill was a member of Branch No. 5 of the Royal Canadian Legion, The Loyal Order of Moose, Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church and the Knights of Columbus. Bill also served several terms as a member of the Chapleau Board of Education.
|Bill is front right|
He was also a long-time member of the Chapleau Town Band. For many years, his father served as the bandmaster.
Bill married the late Juliette (Morin), and they had four children: Anne Marie, Joan, Patrick and Michael. William Payette died at the age of 80 on December 1, 2006.
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