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Rev. Dr. Lars Williamson


1936 - 2018 Obituary Condolences
Rev. Dr.  Lars Williamson Obituary
Rev. Dr. Lars Williamson Rev. Dr. Lars Williamson was born in Cleveland Ohio on October 3rd, 1936. He attended Louisiana Baptist University in Shreveport, Louisiana, where he met his future wife ViElla Porter, who he married in 1958. They moved to California around 1960, where Lars worked at ABC 7, and they both studied at Golden Gate Seminary in Mill Valley. Lars later moved to KGO TV in San Francisco, where he worked as a technical engineer. He joined the Navy Reserves during the Vietnam War. He earned a PhD in Clinical Psychology while working the graveyard shift at KGO. In 1968, he began ministering to homeless people. In 1971, Lars, ViElla and their good friend Judy Bean began Open Door Ministries, and created a space where people could come for food, fellowship, and counseling 7 days a week. They moved Open Door to The First Baptist Church of Sausalito in 1987, and began serving a free dinner every Friday night, with the help of many faithful volunteers, and people from the community who deliver home-cooked meals. Lars and Judy spent 20 years doing suicide intervention, saving the lives of over 3,000 people. Lars served as pastor of The First Baptist Church for many years, and was a chaplain for the Marin and Sonoma County Sheriffs' Departments. He was a long-term resident of Mill Valley, and moved to Forrestville after retiring from KGO TV. Lars passed away peacefully at home on April 4th. He was preceded in death by his beloved wife ViElla. He is survived by his sons Philip and Jon and their families. Lars was a remarkable person, whose ministry spanned 50 years, touching the lives of countless people in Marin and Sonoma Counties. He will be greatly missed. A memorial service celebrating his life will be held this Saturday, August 11th at 2:00 PM at Sausalito Christian Fellowship (formerly The First Baptist Church), located at 131 Filbert in Sausalito.
Published in Marin Independent Journal on Aug. 9, 2018
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