James E. Willison Sr., 88, of Sistersville, W.Va., passed away Nov. 24, 2013, at Sistersville Center.
He was born Nov. 12, 1925, at Benwood, W.Va. He was the son of the late Chalmers and Hattie Wilcox.
James was a U.S. Army veteran of World War II, a lay minister of Sistersville First Christian Church, former Tyler County Assessor, former member of the West Virginia Legislature where he procured funding for many grants for Tyler and Doddridge counties including Sistersville General Hospital, ferry boat, emergency services, senior citizen centers, regional jail in Doddridge County and honored with the Sistersville Junior High School gymnasium being renamed The James E. Willison family center. He was a Sistersville High School graduate and past president of Sistersville High School Alumni Association. He also attended Mountain State Business College.
He was co-founder of the Sistersville Little League and procured the first lighted field in the area, a WVSSAC basketball referee for 22 years, Sistersville Lions Club, VFW Post 6327, BPOE 333, and former owner and operator of the Sistersville City News. James was appointed to numerous committees by Governors Caperton, Wise, Manchin and Tomblin.
He is survived by his wife, Margaret Spangler Willison; son, Jimmy (Tina O'Neil) Willison of Sistersville, W.Va.; daughter, Jo Lynn (Richard) Danser of Sistersville, W.Va.; grandchildren, Jamie Willison, Drew (Megan) Danser and Amy (Doug) Cerasi; and great-grandchildren, Marcus Willison, Austyn and Dylan Cerasi and Leo Danser.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by two sisters, Wanda Kile and Thelma Piatt; and grandmother, Ollie Willison.
Elks Memorial Service will be 2 p.m. Wednesday at Myers Funeral Home, Sistersville, W.Va. Funeral services will immediately follow officiated by Minister Pat Stillwagner. Visitation will be from 11 a.m. until time of funeral on Wednesday. Interment will follow at Greenwood Cemetery, with military graveside rites.
Memorial contributions are requested to the Sistersville Ministerial Association, 610 Main St., Sistersville, WV 26175.
Online condolences may be sent to the family at www.myersfuneralhomewv.com