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Wendell B. Will


1929 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
Wendell B. Will Obituary
March 27, 1929 - December 9, 2017 Wendell Will passed away on December 9th 2017 after a brief illness surrounded by the love of his family and friends. Wendell's life was intertwined with his wife Mary Lou, the love of his life, who predeceased him in 2013. He is survived by his children, Patti, David, Mark, Jonathan and Mary Lou's son Bruce, as well as many friends and acquaintances whose lives were touched and influenced by his wisdom and grace. He is also survived by twelve grandchildren and twenty two great grand children. Wendell enjoyed lending his influence, teachings and assistance to his family members as they made their ways through life. His wisdom, wit and sense of humor will always be remembered as the essence of who he was as a man, a loving family patriarch and friend. He could make even the dumbest joke sound funny with his infectious laugh and comical eye rolls. He had the unique ability of lifting the spirits of those he knew with his thoughtful and caring counsel and understanding of the ways in which ones thoughts can manifest into true happiness in life. Wendell was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan, the son of George and Nellie Will. When he was sixteen years old he and his two buddies, David Key and Robert Wall, whom he had known since kindergarten, decided to become lawyers. Indeed all three became lawyers and remained friends for all of their lives. Wendell earned his A.B. degree from Albion College, majoring in history and economics. He loved Albion College. Later as a college trustee he established the Wendell B. Will Faculty Room in the school library and also provided a substantial scholarship fund. He deeply believed in the value of an education at a small college which allowed one to have close relationships with the professors, who would become valuable mentors. He truly enjoyed helping to provide students with that same experience as they began their educational journey. At Michigan Law School he earned his Juris Doctor with Distinction degree and was editor of the Michigan Law Review. Starting at age thirteen Wendell always had various part time and summer jobs and put himself through college and law school. He graduated from Michigan Law School at twenty three years of age, the youngest in his class. After his final exam he and his then wife Beth and their baby daughter Patricia headed for California in his old Ford where they settled in Glendale California. He practiced law at the firm of O'Melveny and Myers from 1952 to 1956. He then started his own firm and practiced in Glendale until his retirement from law after thirty years, at age fifty three. He practiced litigation and corporate law for large and small businesses including Lockheed and the Hollywood Burbank Airport. After retirement, Wendell studied creative writing at UCLA and international economics at Oxford University in England. He loved to travel to England where he had many close friends, including his Oxford professor. Wendell enjoyed writing and created three published novels and a collection of short stories. In addition to the Albion College Board of Trustees, Wendell served on many non-profit and civic boards, often as Chairman. Wendell loved cars. He became a car collector and was active in the Lincoln Continental and Rolls Royce clubs. His pride and joy was his beautiful blue 2004 Bentley GT. He was a passionate golfer at Oakmont Country Club in Glendale where he was a member for over fifty years. When he no longer played golf he enjoyed the comradeship of his many Oakmont friends. He was also an active member of the Jonathan Club in Los Angeles. Wendell will be greatly missed. His legacy will continue through the love and memories of his family and friends.
Published in the Los Angeles Times from Jan. 19 to Jan. 20, 2018
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