Douglas K. Willis of 198 Black Oak Road, Ithaca passed away at Seneca View Skilled Nursing Facility in Montour Falls on Friday, April 12, 2013 at the age of 83.

Born in Ithaca on March 31, 1930, Doug was the son of the late Morris and Thelma (Leonard) Willis. After graduating high school, Doug began working for the New York Telephone Company as a mechanic.  In 1948 he enlisted into the US Navy, later transferring to the USAir Force. He served as a helicopter mechanic during the Korean War and received an Honorable Discharge in 1954. After his discharge, Doug returned to the Telephone Company where he would be employed for the next 31 years before retiring as a transportation supervisor.  Following his retirement from the Telephone Company, Doug operated a repair shop at his home for 25 years.

During his time in the Air Force, Doug obtained a private pilot’s license and was taught to fly by a man that flew mail across the US with Charles Lindbergh. He owned several planes over the years, flying all over the US whenever he had the opportunity. Doug also owned several motorcycles, classic cars, and classic trucks, all of which he would take to car shows. For years, Doug was an active member of the local Flying Farmers Group and Tompkins County ABATE.

Doug is survived by his wife, Margaret Willis of Ithaca; two sons, Michael (Darlene) Willis of Wayland and Patrick (Marian) Willis of Bradenton, FL; a step-daughter Jacquelyn (Leroy) Jenney of Newfield; three grandchildren Cassandra, Chad (Kristi Easterly), and Christopher; an aunt, Betty Leonard of Melbourne, FL; and many cousins.

A Celebration of Doug’s Life will be held from 2:00 to 4:00pm on Saturday, August 17, 2013 at his home located at 198 Black Oak Road, Ithaca. A Military Honors Tribute will be held at 2:30pm, at his home.

The family asks those who wish to make a contribution in Doug’s memory to kindly consider the Trumansburg American Legion Post 770, PO Box 456, Trumansburg, NY 14886 or the Ithaca VFW, 423 W. State Street, Ithaca, NY 14850.