Arch Jay Willis
, 79, following a long battle with Parkinson’s disease, passed away peacefully on March 12, 2018 surrounded by his family.
Arch was born October 30, 1938 in Mesa, AZ to Hyrum and Lucile Willis. He learned to sew his own shirts, and played the accordion in the marching band before graduating from Mesa High School. He served as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and was instrumental in helping to translate the Book of Mormon into Portuguese. Arch attended one semester at BYU, where he met his future bride, Liana York. He returned to Arizona and eventually graduated from ASU in Electrical Engineering and Computer Programming. He participated in ROTC at ASU, and was selected as their top rifleman.
Arch and Liana were married for 55 wonderful years, and had four children. He worked for Motorola for 35 years, writing computer programs for their test equipment. He also volunteered for his church as a ward clerk for many years and a stake clerk for 19 years, before serving as bishop of the Mesa 3rd Ward. During his retirement, he spent several years traveling with Liana to 45 states. He enjoyed hunting and fishing, watching Star Trek episodes, and bowling…but his favorite pastime was working on computers. Arch was patient and soft-spoken, slow to anger, and quick to laugh.
Arch was preceded in death by his parents, two sisters (Carol and Joyce), his son (Dayn), and great-granddaughter (Stella). He is survived by his sister (Doris), his wife (Liana), his three children (Tera, Taun, and Maren), 14 grandchildren, and 18 great-grandchildren.
Arch will be honored by his family on Saturday, March 17th at the LDS church building at 3770 S. Cooper Road, Chander, AZ 84249. Viewing at 9:00 a.m., followed by funeral service at 10:00 a.m. Interment will be at the Mesa Cemetery immediately following the service.