William J. Carroll, age 75, passed away on Feb. 20, 2018, at a Bangor Hospital. Bill was born on Aug. 11, 1942, to Charles and Mae (Sabonis) Carroll of Southwest Harbor. He graduated from Pemetic High School, Class of 1960, and proudly served his country in the United States Army at Fort Benning, Georgia, from 1960 to 1963. After discharge from the Army, Bill returned to Southwest Harbor and joined father Charles’ family business at Wall’s Coal Co., where he and sister Maryanne ran the company for nearly five decades until their retirement in 2007. As a youth, Bill developed a passion for hunting, fishing, gathering and gardening. These are the passions that shaped BC’s journey through life, fulfilled his dreams, and provided him with countless cherished memories from adventures both far and wide.
As a youthful and avid outdoorsman, Bill enjoyed numerous hunting and fishing trips with his father and brothers David and Bobby. They hunted moose and woodland caribou in Newfoundland, fished for salmon and halibut in Alaska and took numerous trips to Maine’s North Woods on hunting and fishing excursions. BC loved to forage for nature’s bounty and to share it with his friends. At various times of the year, he might be found exploring the woods for edible mushrooms, picking goose tongue greens at Valley Cove, harvesting dandelion greens from a neighbor’s lawn or digging clams on Fernald Point. Bill was extremely particular when sharing the fruits of his labor and took precise inventory of his stocks, in order to adequately supply his intended deliveries. Following a clam tide harvest, a more youthful beneficiary might receive a specific number of steamer clams adequate for an appetizer; whereas, a more senior friend would receive just the right number of shucked clams to make a small chowder. During the last 23 years, Bill took great pleasure in an annual pilgrimage to Alabama with nephew Nathan Carroll, where they embarked on various adventures with close friend Harry Still. The Alabama trips entailed deer hunting, hog hunting, catfishing, crayfishing, tree cutting, mullet tossing, and even joining an underwater logging operation for a 100-year-old mummified giant Cyprus tree. Bill also enjoyed an annual fall trip to Massachusetts to watch a New England Patriots game. He and good friends G. G. Jellison, Jeff Dutra, John Spofford and John Wayne have dropped the tailgate at a Pats game for the last 30-plus years, sharing friendship and food in both victories and defeats.
Bill embraced his retirement years with partner Faye Masterson and loyal companion Tommy (the cat). He remained as busy as ever with life’s many chores. He was both an exceptional gardener and an extraordinary cook. He took great pride in his garden and cultivated a vast selection of vegetables with great skill and care. His friends around town came to expect a bag of BC’s vegetables in the front seat of their car after work. They always knew that the kind and number of items in the bag had been purposely calculated by Bill for reasons of his own choosing. During the afternoons, Bill could often be found, in the back of Gott’s Store, supervising Hazel and others to insure their work was being conducted properly and they undoubtedly had a deep appreciation for his guidance. Once the fishing fleet started to land at the Coal Wharf, Bill would then slide down to check on the boys and inspect the days catch. If a lone Codfish or Cusk were discovered, Bill would graciously offer to relieve them of the fish. In between boats, Bill would take some time to finely manicure his garlic bed next to the old Walls Coal Office. During summers, when his chores were in order and the gardens were in proper shape, Bill spent quality time at his house on Gott’s Island with both family and friends. Island time included hauling his lobster pots, maintaining the property, helping neighbors with chores, and maybe even some relaxation.
Much like Bill Carroll’s cooking, his life had deep flavor. He was blessed to have many opportunities and wonderful friends. He traveled the paths he wanted with purpose and he did it his way. Bill is survived by his three children, Peter Carroll of Pampa, Texas, Michael P. Carroll of Southwest Harbor and Elizabeth Carroll Weaver of Southwest Harbor. In addition to his three children, he is also survived by his partner Faye Masterson and his sister Maryanne Minctons. Bill has five beautiful grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews. Bill was predeceased by his parents, Charles and Mae, and also by two brothers David and Bobby Carroll. Bill celebrated his life each and every day, we will continue that celebration without regard to time.