In loving Memory of Dean Mathew Williams, born April 26, 1962, at North Battleford, SK, passed away June 27, 2015 at North Battleford, SK. Cherished son of Kay (David) Puls; twin brother Darryl Williams; brother Bill (Marcella) Williams, son Kyle; sister Carol Lacoursiere, son Dr. Ryan Lacoursiere (Chantel), sons Kiefer, Jared and Blake; brother Dr. Brian Williams, daughter Paige, sons Blake, Evan and Mark; sister Angela (Dr. Ronald Delaire), son Jonathan (fiancée Amanda), daughters Mercedes and Mariah; sister Cammie (Glenn) Vany, sons Blair and Nathan; and loving companion Michelle Armstrong and her daughters Jaide, Larissa and Mikayla. Dean is also survived by aunts, Mary Chomicki, Mary Ramsay, Lena Rak, Eva Williams and their families as well as many cousins and close friends. Dean was predeceased by his father, Joseph Williams (1993), brother-in-law, Henri Lacoursiere (1998) and many aunts and uncles. Dean was a beautiful, sensitive soul that left us too soon, but he taught us so much while he walked among us. Where there was Dean, there was his twin brother, Darryl, and if Darryl wasn’t there, he wasn’t far behind and vice versa. It was interesting to observe Dean and his brother Darryl as whatever one of them was thinking, the other one was most likely doing that exact thing, at that exact time; a twin synchronicity of sorts. This calls to mind when Dean and Darryl, about 13 years old, constructed a rocket launch system which consisted of black gun powder, a galvanized steel garbage can with a fitted lid, rolls of tape, foam sponge in long rolls, wire, and one human being, their friend Bobby, because he was the smallest. Bobby was convinced to have himself covered in foam sponge – the yellow three inch stuff which was attached to his body from head to toe with wide packing tape. Bobby then sat atop the garbage can with the black gun powder inside the can ignited by a wire firing device and a cord plugged into the outlet in the back yard. Dean and Darryl, 50 feet away from our dining room window, launched Bobby about 25 feet into the air, terrified and waving with Dean and Darryl, highly amused and satisfied with a successful launch in the back yard at 1841 - 97th street. Blessed with the gift of music, Dean first picked up a guitar at about the age of 12 but soon became enamoured with the drums. Along with Darryl, and two other musician friends, they formed the rock band “Cleaver” in high school. Our house at 1841 97th Street, North Battleford was where they practiced a majority of the time. At times the music was so loud, china in the china cabinet would vibrate and dance around! Highly intelligent with a sharp sense of humour, Dean excelled at academics, construction and anything mechanical. Following graduation from the North Battleford Comprehensive High School in 1980, Dean with his brother Darryl attended the U of S in Saskatoon in the pre-med program. After deciding medicine wasn’t for them, being analytical thinkers with a mind for business, they went into the paint business for themselves. Dean took great pride in his work. He was a master painter and a true perfectionist. He also became very good at construction over the years, working with Darryl and their team renovating homes. Dean loved to watch NHL hockey and the CFL. He was a dedicated, loyal Saskatchewan Roughriders Fan, never wanting to miss a game. A guitar connoisseur and car lover, Dean got much satisfaction from searching out and collecting many of these. A drummer for the Living Faith Chapel church band, Dean lived to worship each Sunday and especially cherished the prayer time with the members before the service. He was an accomplished, gifted drummer and became one with his drum set. Dean was a volunteer with the Prairie North Health Region for the past 13 years, and could be counted on to donate his time and sound equipment for health region events. Dean was immensely proud of his faith in God and endeavoured to live his life on that path. He also, very quietly, assisted many others who were struggling in life, giving them hope, faith and encouragement to turn their lives around. His many acts of service and charity to those in need were not known to many of us, until just recently in the event of his passing. A good friend of Dean’s shared this story with us: “One day I saw Dean and his elbows and forearms had some pretty nasty scrapes on them. After asking what had happened, Dean told the story of coming out from his house one evening and a drunk fellow jumped him from behind, pushing him to the ground (hence the scrapes). Next Dean got up and faced the accoster who lunged at him again, only for Dean to move out of the way causing the man to fall, hitting his head on the back of Dean's vehicle, knocking him out. Eyes wide I asked him, “What did you do next?” Dean replied, “I loaded him into the back of my jeep and took him to the ER and spent the next few hours waiting for him to get patched up and made sure he was ok. Only thing is nobody there believed me that I would bring in a guy who attacked me!” This is who Dean was. Since 2010, Dean struggled with his health, which led to a diagnosis of tonsil cancer in 2013. He very bravely received 36 sessions of radiation treatments at the Cancer Centre at the RUH, driving himself there and back every day, five days a week. He had amazing stamina; a day after his tonsils were removed, he picked up a paintbrush and went back to work, stating that he “never felt better.” In January 2013, Dean underwent an extremely complicated surgery performed by Dr. Spafford to remove a tumor from his salivary glands and many lymph nodes. Once again, two short days after surgery, he requested to be discharged as he, “felt like a million bucks!” In the months that followed after the surgery, Dean discovered yoga. He excelled at the poses and was told that many long time students could not do what he was able to do. In April 2015, Dean with his brother Bill went to Palm Springs, California to visit his mom and siblings Angie and Brian and their families. He enjoyed this time immensely, taking in the Coachella Music Festival, touring Hollywood, checking out pawn shops for guitars and of course, being with his family there. Shortly after his return, Dean’s health declined and it was discovered that he was again battling cancer. Dean accepted this challenge with grace, faith and in true Dean style, genuine grit. A brave warrior, he fought hard but also accepted what God’s plan was for him. On June 27, 2015, at peace, Dean went home to be with his Lord and Saviour. On the morning of June 27, 2015, our brother Bill was in Saskatoon driving by a garage sale. He stopped and saw a set of beat up drum sticks. He picked them up and the lady said, “They're free.” As he walked away she said, “You know, there are some life left in those sticks.” After Bill left church shortly after 6:00 pm, he received a call from our brother Darryl. He let Bill know that Dean had just passed away peacefully without any anguish or struggle. Dean had suffered more than long enough and now he was at peace. After Darryl consoled him, Bill mentioned the drum sticks he had been given earlier that day. Darryl asked, “What is the number and name on the sticks?” They were number 3 Promarks, Slaughter brand. Darryl said, “Those were the sticks Dean had always used.” It was like Dean reached out and touched us once again. Any time we hear an awesome drum solo, a Steely Dan, Foo Fighters, Todd Rundgren or Stevie Wonder song, (just to name a few) we will remember the passion and enjoyment you had drumming to all that great music. God bless you Dean. We will always love and miss you, and be proud to call you son, brother, nephew, cousin, partner and friend. We wish to express our thanks to the medical teams at the following hospitals: Royal University, St. Paul's and Battlefords Union Hospital and with special thanks to the BUH Palliative Care nursing staff who provided excellent care and heartfelt compassion to Dean and our families. With thanks as well to Drs. P. Holtzhausen and P. Spafford and the Saskatoon Cancer Clinic and anyone else who may have assisted Dean during his illness. We would also like to thank Pastor Al Huckabay who conducted the service of Celebration and Thanksgiving and all of you who attended the service. Special thanks to the music team at Living Faith Chapel, for whom Dean had the privilege to drum with. He lived to go to church every Sunday and be a part of the music ministry. With a never ending thank-you to everyone for their prayers, kind words, food, assistance with Dean’s care, flowers, cards and encouragement, while Dean was in hospital and in his passing. A special thank you to each of our family members for their special contributions to the music ministry. Kind thanks to the ‘Second To None’ Caterers who provided an excellent luncheon after the service. Compassion, kindness and professionalism were provided by Bob MacKay and his staff of The Battlefords Funeral Service. Interment of cremated remains to follow in June 2016. Memorial Donations in memory of Dean Williams can be made to the Living Faith Chapel Sound System Fund, 1371 103rd Street, North Battleford, Sask. S9A 1K9. Improvements to the sound system at the church were something Dean was working towards prior to his passing. ‘The Drummer’s Prayer’ “I am your instrument, Lord God. You bring the beat to my feet and the rhythm to my hands. May every sound I make bring joy to Your ears and may You bless me as I play.” “Trust God or worry...you can't do both. God is taking care of me.” Dean Williams.
© Copyright Battlefords News Optimist