Residents and members of Six Nations Elected Council are mourning the loss of a popular long-time councillor.
Dave Hill, affectionately known as Big Dave, died Aug. 15 at Brantford General Hospital. He was 71.
“Our hearts are heavy with tremendous sadness with the loss of our long-serving councillor,” said Elected Council Chief Ava Hill. “Dave held that corporate history, which was so important to the work that we do, and we’re forever thankful for the perspective that he brought to the council table.
“He truly had a heart of gold and was always there for the people to help however he could.”
A member of countless committees, Mr. Hill worked on major capital projects including housing and the fire service.
“A lot of people might not recognize this but he worked extremely hard over the years building up our fire service,” Hill said. “We have an excellent fire service today and he was a big part in creating it.
“I think its important to note as well that he had a lot of knowledge that he shared with others and he was someone all of us on council could rely upon for wisdom and advice.”
Mr. Hill will be long remembered for his passion and tireless advocacy on behalf of Six Nations. He had profound and lasting legacy positively impacting the Six Nations community.
“He was a dedicated councillor and community member,” Hill said. “He continued to attend meetings throughout his illness and continued to make significant contributions to the discussion.”
The son of the late John and Wilma, Mr. Hill was first elected to represent District 1 in 1996 and became a member of the 50th Elected Council. He continued to serve on council for the next 23 years.
“Dave was one of the best guys ever,” said Wendy Dow, who posted her condolences on the website of RHB Anderson Funeral Homes. “A man of his word through every aspect of his life whether it was work, fun, sport, community and friendships.
“You leave behind many good memories for all of us to remember.”
Others who posted condolences online recalled his sense of humour, his presence when in the company of others and his big laugh.
A funeral service for Mr. Hill was held Aug. 19. It was followed by interment at the family burial ground at 1533 5th Line Road. As an expression of sympathy, donations can be made to the Miles to Go Cancer Support Group.
Mr. Hill is the second member of the elected council to pass away this year.
Wray Maracle, an elected council member for 11 years, died in March. He was 58.
Mr. Maracle was a big part of the Six Nations Rebels Junior B lacrosse team who also served on many committees. He too contributed a great deal to the community especially in the area of local sports, Hill said.
“It’s been a difficult year for the council,” Hill said. “We lost two councillors who had a lot of knowledge and contributed to the community in a lot of ways.
“We really miss them.”
The next Six Nations Elected Council will be elected in November and because of that, by-elections to replace Mr. Hill and Mr. Maracle on council will not be held.