Larry R. Willis

Published 1:24 pm Tuesday, April 21, 2015

WINDSOR—Larry Russell Willis, 72, passed away on Monday, April 20, 2015.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Russell A. and Ruth Burner Willis; brother, William E. Willis; and sister, Carolyn Willis Hawkins Costner. .

Larry was born June 26, 1942, in Harriman, Tennessee. He grew up in Chase City, Virginia, and Hertford, North Carolina, and had resided in Windsor, Virginia, since 1966.

Best known for his love of scouting, Larry had been Scoutmaster of Boy Scout Troop 41 for 47 years. While in scouting he received many awards including the Council Award of Merit, Silver Beaver, Order of the Arrow Founders Award, God and Service Award, National Ruritan Scout Leader Service Award, the Daniel Carter Beard Masonic Scouter Award, and the National Hall of Leadership Award for the Colonial Virginia Council on the 100th Anniversary of Boy Scouting.

On his 40th anniversary as Scoutmaster, Scouts and leaders of Troop 41 renamed their meeting place to “The Larry Willis Scout House.” One of his proudest accomplishments as Scoutmaster was seeing 50 scouts earn the rank of Eagle, with his grandsons being four of them. He enjoyed traveling with the scouts and had participated in programs in all but one of the BSA High Adventure Bases, including several trips to Philmont Scout Ranch in Cimmaron, New Mexico. He also attended many National Scout Jamborees and one World Jamboree.

In addition to his scouting activities he was an active member of Windsor Congregational Christian Church, a life member of the Windsor Volunteer Fire Department, Windsor Ruritan Club, Purdie Masonic Lodge No. 170, and the Sons of Confederate Veterans.

Larry is survived by his wife of nearly 54 years, Mary Lee Ward Willis; daughters, Cynthia “Sandy” Craig (David) of Chesapeake, Virginia, and Laurie Lee Willman (Chuck) of Suffolk, Virginia; six grandchildren, Andrew Powell, Jacob Craig (Megan), Joe Powell (Leigh Anne), Logan Wright (Lexi), Emily Craig and Hannah Willman; two great-granddaughters, Abigail and Emma Powell.

The funeral services will be on Thursday, April 23, at 11 a.m. in Windsor Congregational Christian Church, U.S. 460, Windsor, with the Rev. John Falk, Pastor Chuck Willman, and the Rev. Basil Ballard officiating.

Visitation will be on Wednesday, April 22, from 6 until 8 p.m. in R.W. Baker & Co. Funeral Home and Crematory, 509 W. Washington St., Suffolk.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Boy Scout Troop 41, C/O Bob Hall, 24212 John Henry St., Windsor, VA 23487, to be used toward scouts attending summer camp.

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