Norwich - Willie Julus Heath Sr. entered into eternal rest Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013, at the Straton VA Medical Center, Albany, N. Y.
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He was born in Edgecombe County, N.C., Dec. 11, 1923. At age 15 he joined the U.S. Navy where he took part in World War II and the Korean War helping ensure American freedom. He and his fellow comrade's presence in the Korean War were recognized recently in the 2013 Tournament of Roses Float â€˜Freedom is Not Free.'
After retiring, he worked several years with the U.S. Civil Service. He spent time as a member of many organizations including The Jeptha Lodge NO. 11 F & A.M. Prince Hall, Inc., Rotary International and Lions International. He was a graduate of Robert E. Fitch High School in Groton. He also was a CPA having attended Wesleyan University in Middletown.
Throughout his life he was a member of and attended several worship venues including Our Lady of Lourdes, Shiloh Baptist Church and in recent years he was a deacon at the Church of God and Christ in Norwich. He was an avid reader and loved to talk politics. He was extremely pleased with the election of President Barack Obama.
He was predeceased by wife Bertha; and wife Jackie; also daughters, Jessie and Willette; and sons, Calvin, Gerald and Karl.
He is survived by a daughter, Martha Smith of Virginia Beach, Va.; sons, Willie Jr. of Schenectady, N.Y., Gary Heath of Dallas, Texas and Earl Heath of Los Angeles, Calif. He also has six grandchildren; and ten great-grandchildren.
Calling hours are 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 18, at Lester Gees Funeral Home, 108 Blinman St., New London. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 19, at Our Lady of Lourdes Church, 1650 Route 12, Gales Ferry. Interment will follow at Cedar Grove Cemetery, Broad Street, New London, with military honors.
Published in The Day on Jan. 16, 2013