William “Bill” Duffy

SOUTH PORTLAND – William “Bill” Duffy (known professionally as William Dufris) has left the stage.Famous for narrating and producing audiobooks and voicing the children’s character, Bob the Builder, Bill went silent on March 24, 2020, after an epic battle with esophageal cancer.Bill discovered early that theater and performance matched his exuberance, curiosity, and collaborative spirit. From local performances to BBC radio dramas, to theater classes for kids, to his award-winning audiobook studio, to time spent with family in their art-filled home, Bill always held the stage and shared it with others.While his voice was heard by millions, he is remembered by family and friends for all the ways he used it to lift others. When he needed to cast an audiobook production, he called not only nationally-known actors, but also local actors, respecting all equally. Bill often recorded celebratory and inspirational messages to his fans using Bob the Builder’s signature phrase, “Can we fix it? Yes, we can!” When he met you in his home or studio, he was ready with a broad grin, fierce embrace, and his rapt attention.Even passers-by took note of Bill’s presence. Neighbors spotted him on his daily walk with his fedora hat and ever-present earbuds. Many more spied his daily t-shirts, expressing his objections to the current administration. Always vocal about injustice, he worked locally to oppose Exxon and tar sands.Bill leaves behind the love of his life, his wife Maria Reuillard; and his beloved stepchildren, Gwendolyn, Emily, Ben, Rebecca, and Jacob Myshrall. He also leaves behind cherished siblings, Ruthann Duffy, Michael Duffy, and Diane Hiscoe; and his nieces and nephews. It is this family that feels Bill’s step from the stage the most acutely.Bill’s passing follows the departure of his parents; and brothers, Jim and Tom.At a recent celebration of his life, Bill said, “Tales…we have so many tales that we share with one another.” Whether in his audio productions or his deeply engaging encounters, Bill Duffy has left us so many tales.Memories and condolences may be shared with the family online at directcremationofmaine.com. In his memory, share a story … and live one.