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TAPS - George "Doc" Willis

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American Legion Dept. of Louisiana

It is with great sadness that I must inform you of the loss of Sous Chef de Chemin de Fer George 'Doc' Willis; who reported to Voiture Everlasting this morning 22 August 2012. He had a brain hemorrhage during the night and passed this morning. Please keep his wife Joyce and his family in your prayers and thoughts. George was a good man and a dedicated Voyageur that will surely be missed. He was a candidate for Chef de Chemin de Fer and now will be the Big Chef at Voiture Everlasting. You may reach the family at:

303 Old Gaston Ext.

Gaston, NC 27832

“Doc” was a good man and Our organization is now a little weaker.


George H. “Doc” Willis was born in Buncombe County, (Asheville) North Carolina on August 15, 1942. His family moved to eastern North Carolina (Halifax County) and he attended school in Weldon, NC. At the age of 16, he joined the United States Navy and celebrated his 17th birthday in The Great Lakes, Illinois “boot camp”. His military career covered the next 30 years, giving him an ‘education of life’ with 27 ‘duty stations’ which includes 16 of the 30 years with the Fleet Marine Force, where he retired in 1989 as Master Chief, FMFLANT. His military awards include the Navy Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Achievement Medals (2), Navy “E” Ribbon, Navy Good Conduct Medal (7), Navy Expeditionary Medal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (2), Humanitarian Service Medal (2), and Navy Sea Service Medal (2).



  • Department Commander in June, 1999.
  • Department Membership Chairman, 1997-1998.
  • Numerous Department Committees & Commissions
  • Transferred to Roanoke Rapids, NC Post 38, 1991 & became a PUFL member
  • Joined in Emporia, VA in 1990


  • Appointed Sous Chef de Chemin de Fer 2011
  • Nationale Directeur, Carville Star 2008-2011
  • Carville Star Committee Nationale 2003-2008
  • Grand Chef de Gare in 2006-2007
  • Grand Correspondant 2004-2008
  • Numerous Grand Directeur positions
  • Served as Locale Chef de Gare, Locale Correspondant, and numerous committees

George is also a Life Member of AMVETS, where he was Post Commander 5 years, and Life Member of VFW, MARINE CORPS LEAGUE (where he was the first US NAVY Hospital Corpsman to be elected Detachment Commandant in North Carolina), and Life Member of ANAVICUS (Army, Navy, Air Force, Veterans in Canada & United States).


  • Woodman of the World Volunteer of the Year 2006
  • President/CEO of first veterans’ museum in Halifax County (Roanoke Valley Veterans’ Center)
  • VAVS Director 5 years
  • VISN-6 Board of Advisors, Veterans’ Affairs
  • DAV Van driver 3 years
  • Northampton County American Red Cross Manager 2 years
  • Ruritan of the Year 1996


  • Received Masters in Business Administration, Magna Cum Laude, 2005
  • Taught as Associate Professor, Tidewater Community College
  • Taught as Associate Professor, George Washington University School of Medicine
  • Attended Old Dominion University, Norfolk, VA
  • Attended Chapman University, California
  • Attended Weldon High School, Weldon, NC until joining US NAVY in 1959


  • Married to Joyce Willis who is currently serving as Chairperson, La Femmes Nationale Carville Star program and North Carolina American Legion Auxiliary Department Chaplain

George has 3 sons, George, Jr., Jeff, & Kevin, 2 step-sons, Bill & Jim Turner, 16 grandchildren and 2 great-grandchildren. George is active and has served as a deacon for 3 years in Community Original Freewill Baptist Church, Weldon, NC.