FHS student’s funeral set for Tuesday

Published 12:00 am Monday, April 21, 2008

FRANKLIN—Funeral services for Josh Willis, a 19-year-old senior at Franklin High School who died at home Wednesday morning, will be held Tuesday at 1 p.m. at the Apostolic Faith Church of God on Oak Street in Franklin.

A candlelight vigil was held Friday evening at the football field at Armory Stadium where Willis played his home games.

Willis, a four-year letterman in two sports at the school, died in his family’s house on Yeidee Street before school started. He had no known medical conditions that were detected before his death, his football coach said.

The cause of death had not been determined by press time on Friday. Aurellius Willis, an older brother, said Friday that the family had not been told when a medical examiner’s report would be available.

While getting ready for school, Willis had been on the phone with a classmate to confirm transportation to the school when he apparently fell to the floor in the bathroom.

His mother, Linda, heard the fall and found her son. She called 911, and the paramedics, after trying to revive Willis, transported him to Southampton Memorial Hospital, Aurellius Willis said his brother died at the house.

Johnson Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.

Franklin High School and J.P. King Middle closed early on Wednesday, after is was known that Willis had died. It was unclear Friday whether classes will be held on Tuesday.

When the high school reopened on Thursday, students and faculty members remembered Willis with memorials. Guidance Counselor Ale Massenburg said on Thursday that students and faculty members were &uot;coping as best as they can.They are naturally upset,&uot; she said. &uot;It was an unexpected death.&uot;