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Willis Russell

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Willis Russell Obituary
Willis Eugene Russell

January 24, 1942

October 12, 2014

Willis E. Russell, known as Bill, passed away on 10/12/2014 at St. Mary's Hospital due to complications following successful treatment for lung cancer at the age of 72.

Bill was born and grew up in Livermore, California, on a chicken ranch with his parents, 2 brothers, and 1 sister.

He retired after 20 years with the Air Force, serving in both peace time and details during the Viet Nam war. He moved to Reno after his retirement where he became employed with the MGM Grand. Most recently, he retired from the AFL-CIO, where he worked tirelessly as a union organizer within the casino industry.

Bill is preceded in death by his parents, Rube and Lou Russell, and his youngest brother, James (Jim) Russell. He is survived by his wife, Barbara Russell, his daughters, Carrie Valdez, Sherri Twedt, and April Zaring, all of Reno, and his sons, Scott Russsell of Tacoma, Washington, and John Lockridge of Visalia, California, and also his son's in law, Hank Valdez and Jeff Twedt, and daughter's in law, Dotty Russell and Cheryl Lockridge. He was also loved by and will be missed by many grandchildren and great-grandchildren, as well as his brother Robert (Bob) Russell of Reno, and sister, Darlene Schmeirer of Fairfield, California.

"People die, memories do not; cherish the people in your life, let them know you love them, because sometimes our loved ones are taken from us so suddenly we never get the chance to tell them how we really felt."

Bill, Dad, Papa, Grandpa, Uncle, Brother, friend, by whichever name you were known, you are loved and will be missed.

Published in Reno Gazette-Journal on Oct. 16, 2014
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