Michael Pille, who has died at the age of 81, arrived in West Bolton from the Netherlands with his family when he was nine years old. He lived here for the rest of his life, was active
and generous in the local community, and founded Windmill Plastics. Michael Pille was born in October of 1940 in Medemblik, in northern Holland, five months after the German Army occupied the country. That part of Holland suffered a famine in the winter of 1944-45 as the Germans continued to occupy until it was liberated, mostly by Canadian troops.
Michael’s parents, Meindert and Marie Pille, were farmers in Holland and came to Canada in July of 1949, arriving at the Foster train station where they were met by the Mackenzie family who farmed in West Bolton. They worked and lived there for a few years before Meindert became the farm manager at Argyll Farm.
Michael went to Knowlton High School, where he played hockey and was active in debating and public speaking. He graduated in 1959 and worked in Montreal at CNR, “But he was not a city boy and came back to Knowlton,” said his sister Margaret Pille. Eventually he worked at Tupperware in Cowansville and when it closed he and some colleagues founded Windmill Plastics in Knowlton in 1985. It made toys and kitchen products, among other things.
Mike Pille sold the business in 2012 and spent his retirement at his house on Highland in Knowlton, fixing old cars. Over the years Mike was active in the community. He was on the Community Services Board and helped organize and finance fireworks displays. “He was generous but liked to stay in the background,” said his sister. Michael Pille died on June 5th. He is survived by his sister Margaret, his nephew Geoff Pille, and niece Irana Pille. Sandra Bennett his partner of 65 years died in March of this year.
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