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 Rene Arthur Willis

Rene Arthur Willis

Petoskey, Emmet County, Michigan, USA
Death 19 Jan 2011 (aged 91)
Holland, Ottawa County, Michigan, USA
Burial Saugatuck, Allegan County, Michigan, USA
Memorial ID 100147604 · View Source
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René Arthur Willis Jr., age 91, passed away on Wednesday, January 19, 2011 at Hospice House of Holland.

René was born in Petoskey, Michigan to Rose and René Willis Sr. He lived in Lowell, Elmdale, Alma, Monroe and finally Holland where he attended and graduated from Hope College with a degree in chemistry. While at Hope he met and eventually married Anita Vogt on August 2, 1941. René supported the war effort by taking a job at U.S. Rubber as a research chemist in Detroit before returning to Holland.

From 1945 until his retirement in 1984 he worked in varying positions for Holland Color which changed ownership to Chematron and eventually BASF. René was instrumental in developing paints for the auto industry before moving into sales and then overseeing OSHA safety regulations for the Holland location.

René was a member of the Kiwanis and helped establish the West Michigan Chapter of the American Chemical Association. He loved tennis, golf and bowling.

René was preceded in death by brothers Martin, John, Tom and nephew Bill Willis.

He is survived by his wife Anita of 69 years, his daughter Pamela (Annie) Olson, son-in-law Phil Olson, grandchildren Benjamin (Leslie) Thomas, Tracy (Taylor) Aalvik, Kathryn (Kirk) Koeman, great grandchildren Scott and Randall Thomas, Steven and Allyson Hughes, Andrew and Matthew Koeman, Kayla Aalvik, niece Faye Corbitt, nephew John Willis, great nephew John Corbitt and great niece Cathy Corbitt.

A reception to remember and celebrate the life of René will be held this coming Sunday, January 23 at the home of Annie and Phil Olson, 270 E. 19th St. (corner of 19th and Hazel) beginning at 1:00. Call 616-396-0210 for more information.

To see the online registry, visit.

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  • Created by: Scout
  • Added: 4 Nov 2012
  • Find A Grave Memorial 100147604
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Rene Arthur Willis (14 Aug 1919–19 Jan 2011), Find A Grave Memorial no. 100147604, citing East Saugatuck Cemetery, Saugatuck, Allegan County, Michigan, USA ; Maintained by Scout (contributor 47319613) .