It is with profound sadness that we announce the sudden passing of William Allister “Billy” O’Laney, 66, on Saturday, November 4, 2023, as the result of a fatal motorbike accident.
Born and raised in Laggan, he was the son of the late Douglas Ray “Doug” and Emma Philomena (Gomm) O’Laney. Billy had a love for the outdoors and was always up for an adventure. He lived life to the fullest! Billy’s love for his family was immeasurable. He loved camping trips with Jenny and the grandchildren, family gatherings and being with those who meant the most to him. Billy had a huge heart and would lend his able helping hands to anyone and everyone. He constantly gave freely the most important gift one could give, his time. When Billy was with you, he was never in a rush, and if you were, he would tell you, “don’t panic”.
Billy worked as a millwright all his life, having worked all over Canada as a member of Union Local 1178. In 1988, he and Jenny purchased a lobster license and proceeded to work alongside each other for over a decade on the waters of Lismore Wharf. During this time, Billy obtained his Captains license and became the President of the Lismore Harbour Authority. Billy retired from fishing in 1999 and then worked at Northern Pulp until retirement in 2020.
Billy is survived by his loving wife of 42 years, Jenny; children, Jason (Kelly), Red Deer, Alta.; Holly (Corey), Merigomish; Janelle (Shawn), Amherst; chosen daughter, Melody (Will), Squamish, B.C.; grandchildren; Tristin, Keel, Jett, True, Emma, Rhys, Sawyer, Nolan, Dillon, Nathan and Frank; siblings, Theresa, Dot, Doug (Freda), David (Karen), Charlie (Patsy), Faith (Roger), Kathy, Denise (Eddie), Darlene (Clint); mother-in-law, Irene MacDonald; sisters-in-law, Deborah, Kathy (Les) and Cindy; numerous nieces and nephews.
Besides his parents, he was predeceased by sister, Eva Dean; brother, Dan Praught; father-in-law, Robert MacDonald; brothers-in-law, Thomas “Trout” MacDonald, George Simms, Carl MacLeod, and Roy Rogers; nephews, James Freeman, Michael, and Mark MacLeod.
The family will receive visitors 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. Thursday, November 9 in P. & K. MacDonald Funeral Home, New Glasgow from where funeral service will be held 11 a.m. Friday, November 10 with Mrs. Lois Thompson officiating.
If desired you may honour Billy's memory by doing an act of kindness for someone else.
"Let nature lead you home.”