Raymond Sheryl Willis passed away at his home in Goldendale after a long battle with cancer on February 11, 2021. He was born at home in Goldendale on April 2, 1941, to Ellen (Hoctor) and Sheryl Willis.
Raymond attended Goldendale School District and graduated from Goldendale High School in 1959. He continued his education at YVCC and Perry Tech before enlisting in the Air Force in 1963. Ray lived in Bellevue after his service. There he worked for Quench Bottling Company in Seattle. While living there, he met his wife, Harriet, whom he married in 1974. Ray moved back to Goldendale in 1974 to run the family farm when his dad fell ill. They operated the family’s farm while raising three children.
He played fast pitch softball for over 15 years. In his time away from farming, he loved to hunt with family and friends. He loved a good laugh, even if it was at himself. He drove the school bus for 33 years He especially loved driving the sports trips and watching local talent develop. He was well known for his water-witching talent and his willingness to help a friend or neighbors. He was a member of the Sheriff’s Posse and a volunteer for Rural 7 for over 25 years. He was the 2019 Klickitat County Cattleman of the year. He was most proud of his children and grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his parents and his brother, Tom Willis. He is survived by his children Marsha Willis of Portland, Oregon, Joe (Amy) Willis of Kennewick, Washington, and Kelly (Will) Sizemore of Centerville; brothers Terry Willis of Goldendale, Daryl Willis of Snohomish, Washington; sister Marylin McKune of Goldendale; and three grandkids, Shureenia, Westin, and Lenzie.
We will celebrate his life in the spring. In lieu of flowers, friends are encouraged to honor Ray's life by donating to the Klickitat County Historical Society or the Klickitat County Cattleman’s Association.