Photo courtesy of Bangs Funeral Home, Inc. - Ithaca

Judith E. Willis

Ithaca, New York

Feb 9, 1946 – Mar 25, 2019 (Age 72)


February 9, 1946
March 25, 2019
Ithaca, New York


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Bangs Funeral Home, Inc. - Ithaca Obituary

ITHACA – Judith Eileen Willis, 73, retired former Director of Gadabout Transportation Services, left us on Monday, March 25, 2019.

Judy had also worked at the SPCA briefly and in the Cornell Anthropology Dept. with Prof. John Murra, whom she befriended in his waning years, always devising ways for him to remain in his own home.

A dog and a cat lover extraordinaire, an animal rights advocate as well as an animal rescuer and pet adoption coordinator, Judy truly loved all animals, including her half linger riding horse, Guinness.  All who knew Judy loved her pleasant and always helpful manner.

Judy, an only child, had no close relatives but is survived by a host of wonderful friends and acquaintances as well as her loving partner and companion, David Grosvenor (and his extended family), with whom she founded and operated the Lucky Dog Inn for several years, eventually leasing it to a series of resident kennel operators.

Friends may call from 1-3 pm on Sunday, March 31, 2019 at Bangs Funeral Home, Inc., 209 W. Green St. in Ithaca, NY.  A memorial service will be held later in the spring.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Judy’s memory may be made to your favorite animal protection organization.

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We loved Judy. Her smile, her positive attitude and her deeply caring personality made a mark on our family. Judy and Dave took care of our Jack Russel-Chihuahua mix, Sparky. They cared for Sparky with so much love, and their home was truly a second home for our dog. They even let her sleep in their bedroom, on their bed. Whenever we were approaching the "Lucky Dog Inn and Cat Spa", Sparky would start jumping around the car and howling with joy and excitement. We were always...

I read with true sadness of Judy's passing. We met when I joined Gadabout as a driver. Her great spirit, warmth, cheerfulness and leadership helped to make my tenure there pleasant and productive. I will remember her always.

We are so sorry to hear this news. Judy and shared a a horse in Danby named "Drysack". We found land and a leased barn for him, and we worked for weeks putting in posts and fences for him. Hard work as it was, her sense of humor in the job that faced us and her commitment to this horse in his comfort was her main priority. That horse did more for me than I could of ever done for him, and we adored him, and he us. We moved away and I had to leave him, but Judy would send me photos....

Judy always had a sharp wit, amazing sense of humor, and it was always a joy to speak with her. She will be truly missed.

Judy was a great lady, always working for a cause of some sort. She was a passionate defender of animals and a grand human being. She was never afraid to do something unconventional to further her goals. She was a loyal friend and always an advocate for the underdog. I'm sorry to see her go.

-Glynis Hart

We will miss our former neighbor. She was truly a champion for humans and critters alike. She taught me about the spiralling dances of the woodcocks at this time of year. I have yet to capture them with my eyes, but I hear them and think of Judy. Our thoughts go to Dave and family.

I first met Judy when she started working at the SPCA. I had just left employment there. Years latter we reconnected while she was at Gadabout. Each time we connected it was like we were good old friends. In reality our meetings were infrequent. She was a good and honorable human being, perhaps best described as a "Humane Being".

Rest In Peace

Judy was a kind hearted, generous, woman of good will. All of her enthusiasm and passion made life better for the many souls she touched. I will miss her being in this world.

It is a great sadness to lose Judy. I have known her since her days in the Department of Anthropology where she was a bright spot of humanity & light. Her concern for those around her went far beyond the professional requirements of her job. Especially whenever dogs were concerned!

At one point, when she was still in the Anthro Dept, and I had Misha, a malemute-shephard cross who didn't bark but loved to howl, Judy had obtained some wolf call recordings. She wanted to see what...