John Hampton “Junior” Willis, Jr., 88, of Bainbridge, GA, passed away Friday, August 21, 2020.
A private memorial service will be held on Friday, August 28, 2020 at Ivey Funeral Home Chapel with Rev. Brian Hatchett and Rev. Jackie Piland officiating. Interment will be at Roselawn Memory Gardens. Due to the ongoing concerns regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, those attending are asked to maintain the recommended safe social distancing of six feet and/or wear protective masks in accordance with the State of Georgia guidelines.
John Hampton Willis, Jr. was born May 6, 1932 in Norman Park, GA, the son of John Hampton Willis and Ora Weaver Willis. He was a graduate of Norman Park High School. Junior married Alice Warren in 1955 and they made their home in Bainbridge where he worked as manager and co-owner of Herring IGA for 37 years and then another 18 years at John B. Sanfilippo & Son. Junior was a member of Calvary Baptist Church.
Golfing, fishing, baseball, bird dogs, and Jaycees were a few of Junior’s passions. He loved home so much he passed up a draft ticket to the AAA Detroit Tigers. He served as Bainbridge Bass Club President, and legend has it, Junior could out fish the pros on Lake Seminole. He enjoyed a good quail hunt especially when his dogs were put to the test. (Miss Alice says Junior would not hear of a “house dog” but always allowed his bird dogs in the kitchen.) Family and friends could always count on a kind word, a sweet smile, and a hand up. His joy was grounded in family and, without a doubt, spoiling his grandchildren.
Survivors include his wife of 64 years, Alice Warren Willis; his children, John & Jackie Willis, Wayne & Julie Willis, and Denise Parker, all of Bainbridge, GA, and Cindy & Woody Palmer of Overland Park, KS; his siblings, Jeanette Dochterman of Ackworth, GA, and Johnnie Maude Summerour, Jack & Joshetta Willis, and Shirley & Billy Gay all of Moultrie, GA; his grandchildren, Skyler & Hayley, Zach, Heath, Brannon, Peyton, Kristy & David, Misty & Ernie, and Kim & Will; and his great-grandchildren, Emma, Trace, Camdyn, Eason, Emma, Christian, McKenzie, and Ryan. In addition to his parents, Junior was preceded in death by his sister, Betty Jean Snider; and his son-in-law, Charles Jeffrey Parker.