Archives of Falconry Legacy Circle, Gary Bolis, Lynn
Appleman, Laurel Gutter, Jeff Kisak, Ken and Jan Felix,
Vaughn Good, Mark Shields, Diane Sembello, The
Pennsylvania Falconry and Hawk Trust, Marek Plater,
Thomas Beaver, North American Falconers Association
Back then, Bill was already considered to be
one of the great “Old Timers along with
Jim Rice and Corny McFadden. Although
Jim and Corny started much earlier than
he (Bill started in falconry sometime in the
50s.), Bill was already revered by the rest of
the falconry community here in PA. He was
always ready, willing and able to help any of
us who needed it and he wasn’t shy about
IN MEMORY OF “Billy Blizzard
by Ken Felix
I met Bill nearly fifty years ago
when I was at the University of
giving advice. One could accurately state that
before there was Google, there was Bill!
Bill always preached and practiced the
highest standards of falconry. His birds,
be they falcon, accipiter, or buteo, were
impeccably mannered, perfectly feathered,
and as deadly as they were beautiful.
Bill believed that to be a real falconer one
had to trap his own bird, train it himself, and
make all/most of his own equipment. The
only pieces of equipment that I am aware
that Bill ever bought were swivels and bells.
He was affectionately known as “Billy
Blizzard” to those who knew him well. He
acquired that name because of the many
treacherous drives he made through miles
of white-out conditions attending falconry
meets. Bill joined NAFA in 1965. He was
a staunch supporter and advocate for both
NAFA and the PFHT (Pennsylvania Falconry
and Hawk Trust). He served as the founding
vice president of the PFHT and held that
position for over 20 years. I challenge
anyone to name another individual who
attended more NAFA meets than Bill. I’m
pretty sure that he attended every NAFA
meet since the late 60’s.
Last November 2017, although he was
physically too weak to trap, train, and hunt
a bird, he drove by himself from his home
in Southeastern Pennsylvania to Kearney,
Nebraska with an oxygen generator sitting
on the passenger seat and a hose connected
to his nose just so he could see old friends
and participate in the meet.
Bill could tell stories about hawking and
life in general all day long. We all listened
eagerly. During his long life he had many
fantastic experiences, some hilarious, some
Bill was preceded in death by the love of his
life, his wonderful wife Puddy”. Not long
after she passed away Bill was affected by a
severe respiratory ailment which tragically
took his life.
Bill is an icon here in PA and through most
of the country. Falconry has lost a noble
ambassador and so many of us have lost a
caring, honest, delightful and dependable
friend. We miss you Bill, we always will.
An icon and a much
revered member in the
Falconry Community, Bill
will be greatly missed.
Bill the snake charmer
PFA Meet in 1969
Young Bill with Kestrel
Bill always
preached and
practiced the
highest standards
of falconry.
Bill in 1982
Bill ridge trapping
in 1984
NAFA in 1998