For those of you who knew Bill or simply had a hike with him, how would you, in a few short words, describe him? Naturalist, park ranger, author, photographer, rock and mountain climber, river cruise aficionado, loving husband, father and friend, composter, actor/singer in Gilbert and Sullivan musicals, volunteer weather tracker, expert on native flora and fauna, educator? Yes, he was all these things and more. He was a dedicated fundraiser for our library as well as a feisty sponsor for its xeric and native plants and grasses. He researched and had produced all the signs naming the library’s plant and labyrinth features to educate and inspire us. He was a tireless volunteer of his knowledge, time, resources and energy, creating a comprehensive plant list of all the native plants and grasses that decorate the hills and arroyos surrounding the library, gleaned from his 32-year residency in Placitas.
From the beginning of his career in the National Park Service, having served in Hawaii, Carlsbad Caverns, Yellowstone and Yosemite, through his tenure with the Nature Conservancy in Albuquerque, until his final few days he engaged in life and creativity, editing and correcting the final drafts for his last book From Climbing Peaks to Saving Our Planet, his memoirs. Vangie, Bill’s wife and devoted companion and other family members will distribute copies of the book at his celebration of life event. You can secure a copy of his final book by contacting Friesen Press, Site 300, 990 Fort Street, Victoria, BCV8V 3K2, Canada or www.friesenpress.com.
So, please join us for “one more hike with Bill” on October 26, from 2 to 4 at the Placitas Community Library. Walk around, take in the beauty and imagine his voice guiding you every step of the way.
In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to Placitas Public Library in Bill’s name (William W. Dunmire).
Written and submitted by Suzanne Maxwell, honored to be Bill’s friend