Lemley Chapel
Serving Sedro-Woolley &
All of Skagit County Since 1935
1008 Third Street
Sedro-Woolley, WA
Ruby Willis Memorial
Ruby Willis Memorial

Ruby Willis

Ruby Willis

Saturday, July 18th, 2015

Ruby Jewell Willis, 101, passed away on July 18, 2015 at the Life Care Center of Skagit Valley.

She was born on June 7, 1914 in Board Camp, Arkansas, the eldest of nine children of Ode & Belle (Robbins) Cook.  She grew up in the Black Springs, AR picking cotton and caring for her younger siblings.

On February 1, 1930 Ruby was united in marriage to Raymond Willis in Black Springs.  In the mid 1930’s they moved to McCreary, WA, later moving to Skagit County living in Anacortes before moving to Kennewick for a few years.  In 1953 they returned to the Skagit Valley living in Burlington until Ray’s retirement in 1960 when they moved to Day Creek where they operated a berry farm.

Ruby enjoyed crocheting, cooking, canning, gardening, her flowers and will be remembered for her fried chicken, cornbread and sweet pickles.

She is survived by her children and their spouses, Larry & Arlene Willis of Clear Lake, Ruby & Ellis Buchanan of Clear Lake, Priscilla & Bob Johnson of Burlington and Linda Willis of Mount Vernon; grandchildren, Randy Buchanan (Linda), Debbie Waite (Brian), Pam Willis, Patty Bacus, Connie Hanowell (Steve), Bobbie Johnson (Julie), Terri Thompson (Terry), Brody Willis (Carla), John Willis (Lela), Jodi Dynes (Mike), Larry Willis, Casey Rae, Sheila Rae, Corrie Blackstock Cornelison (Greg) and several great-grandchildren, great-great-grandchildren, several sisters, nieces and nephews.  She was preceded in death by her parents; husband Ray; two daughters, Nelda Schimke and Sharon Jones; one sister and one brother.

A graveside service will be held on Friday, July 24, 2015 at 2:00 pm at the Sedro-Woolley Union Cemetery. Memorials are suggested to the American Cancer Society.



  • Sheila Rea

    To Grandma, It had been too long since I last saw you, when my Mom died. And I’m sorry I was never able to get back down there before you passed. I wanted you to meet my daughter Quinn, and her you. I was unable to get down for your funeral, but you have been in my thoughts. I have told my daughter about you best I can, from what I know and can remember. You were loved by many, and that is as rich as life gets I think. Rest in Peace.

  • Beverly (Spurrier) Cloer

    Ruby was such a kind woman! My folks bought their property in Day Creek in 1969 so we were neighbors for a few years. Linda and I were best friends and my brother, Tom was Linda’s boyfriend in high school. I used to spend the night with Linda quite often, and her Mom always seemed to be cooking or making something! I’ll always remember when I would walk up the hill to the school bus stop, Ruby and Ray were already up, had already had breakfast and were sitting in their living room chairs. I marveled at how early they got up because that bus came at 6:45 am HA! Rest in Peace Ruby. My condolences to the entire family. God Bless.

  • Jen Willis

    What a long and wonderful life Ruby had. I have many fond memories of her and Grandpa Willis and their house on Buchanan. One always felt at home there.
    She is a beloved matriarch and raised wonderful children. She made everyone feel like a part of her family. Sending you all my deepest sympathy in her time of passing. I will remember her fondly and she will continue to hold a place in my heart. Thank you for sharing her with me.