Leon Porter Willis, 93 of Ontario passed away Friday, August 30, 2019 at his home. Porter was born in Clarksville, Arkansas to Jacob and Martha (Hatchett) Willis and was the youngest of twelve children. The family arrived in Ontario, Oregon on April 18th, 1934. His mother passed away when he was eleven in Ontario and his father returned to Arkansas in 1935. He continued to live here with his brothers and sisters during this time until he graduated from Ontario High School. Porter met his wife to be, Helen Warren, on April 16th, 1945 in Ontario. He was drafted and served in WWII, entering April 25th, 1945 and was discharged on December 15th, 1946. After his return from the Army, he and Helen continued to date and were married in Winnemucca, Nevada on October 14th, 1947, driving a convertible car borrowed from Bob Gillam. They celebrated their 71st wedding anniversary last year. Porter worked various jobs in the valley before being hired by the City of Ontario in the Water and Sewer department where he was employed for over 30 years. Porter was a lifetime member of the Ontario Elks Lodge #1690 and Elk of the Year in 1992. Porter and Helen loved gardening, fishing at Owyhee, hunting and camping in Sumpter. He is survived by his wife Helen, daughter Linda (Jim) Getten of Payette Idaho, and son David (Cindy) Willis of New Plymouth, Idaho, grandchildren Jennifer Willis, Edmund Willis, Nathan Getten and Mistie McDuff and 6 great-grandchildren. He was the last living member of his family and was preceded in death by a baby daughter Kathy and a great-grandson Jayden Warren Willis. As a young man, he played city league basketball and baseball, umpired baseball, and continued to love watching all sporting events in his retirement years. He was a loving husband, father, and friend. He passed peacefully at home with his family at his side. Our gratitude to Heart and Home Hospice for the exceptional care, support, and love they have given our family. A VFW and Elks graveside service will be held on Tuesday, September 10, 2019 at 10 am at the Evergreen Cemetery in Ontario under the direction of the Haren-Wood Funeral Chapel and Crematory, Ontario. A celebration of life will be held for his family and friends at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Porter’s name to the Elks Eye Bank in care of BPOE #1690 Ontario, Oregon. He was so loved and will be greatly missed.
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