James Dewalt Willis, 76, of the Ruth community died Wednesday, Aug. 4, 2021.
Mr. Willis was born to Carlton and Elzorah Light Willis. He was married to the former Anoise Robinson for 55 years.
Known as “Big Pop” to those he cherished most, he was a lifetime resident of the Ruth community. He served in the United States Marine Corps during the Vietnam War.
Upon returning to Arab, he continued to serve others at the local fire and police departments. Dedicated to the city he loved, he worked tirelessly to establish the Ruth Volunteer Fire Department.
He received the Citizen of the Year award in 1991. He was a lifelong member and deacon of Ruth Baptist Church.
His charismatic and jovial spirit will forever be missed by all who knew and adored him.
He is survived by his wife: Anoise Willis; daughter and son-in-law: Stacey and Kelly Parker; sons and daughters-in-law: Rodney and Amy Willis of Arab and Scott and Kari Willis of Covington, Ga.; grandchildren: Blake Willis, Brooke Willis, Kane Parker, Hanna Willis, Aubrey Parker, Macie Parker, Tyaler Willis, Madison Willis, Anslee Saunchegraw, Cooper Saunchegraw’ sister: Malinda Howard; sisters-in-law: Susa Frame and Sandra Bailey Willis; and a number of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
He was preceded in death by a brother: Gary “Bo” Willis.
The funeral was at 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 7, 2021, at Gober Funeral Chapel. Burial, with full military honors, was in Arab Memorial Cemetery.
Memorials may be made to Child Advocacy Center, 1620 Railroad Ave., Guntersville, AL 35976.