Late in the evening on New Year’s Eve, our father, Bill Francis, patriarch of the Francis clan, passed away peacefully at home with loved ones and his best friend, Big Daddy, a loyal black lab, by his side. Dad was born in Bowerston, Ohio, May 25, 1929, and was the fourth child and only son born to Willard and Nellie Francis (McFeely).
He is survived by nine sons and daughters, William, James, Mark, Alesandrio, Kenneth, Marie, Joyce, Kathy, and Mary.
Willard was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Alice; daughter, Carol; sons, Nicholas, David, and Gary; grandson, Philip; and three older sisters, Melva, Ruth, and Marjorie.
During World War II, at a very early age, Dad joined the Merchant Marines, transporting troops and equipment to various locations. This led to his love of ships and a career as a Merchant Seaman. We enjoyed stories of his travels and the many ports he visited throughout the world. While at home, in between sailing, Dad was also involved in construction and will probably be best remembered as the owner and operator of Krazy Bills Used Cars that was located on Main Street. Cooking outside on an open fire with family and friends was Dad’s favorite pastime.
Pops, we all love and miss you more than anyone will ever know, and take comfort in knowing that you won’t be alone on your journey, Mom and the boys will be with you every step of the way.
Due to restrictions, there will not be any inside services, however at 1 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 9, 2021, there will be a celebration of life held graveside at the Grand Mound Cemetery.