J. Stewart Willis’ ‘extraordinary pedigree’

J. Stewart Willis Courtesy photo

J. Stewart Willis, known to all as Stu, lives in Sperryville on Main Street, in a charming centuries old home, the interior design of which celebrates his wife Eve’s extraordinary decorative flair. Her passing left a profound void in his life. He pretty much dropped out of sight the past decade taking care of her and following her death in 2015, he took up writing, which was something he had thought about for years.

He’s now published two highly regarded novels and readies for a third soon to hit the stands.

“Gestation Seven” and “Deadly Highway” are action packed, page turning mysteries. His third is a departure, “Three Degrees Fahrenheit, and Rising” is a futuristic, apoplectic opus, taking place in 2087 and revolves around three families escaping massive coastal flooding in the United States, and follows their journey to Canada. His first two publications are available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Google Books and naturally locally at Rare Finds, the shop where once his beloved Eve showcased her interior design genius.

I had the honor of sitting down recently with Stu, and of course Charlie, his borzoi cross, and with Maryanne Jenkins, happily hovering in the kitchen, his all around dedicated helper, cooking and caring for him and his beloved quadruped.

We talked of his books, about his life. In his mid 80’s, he is a man of extraordinary pedigree. Stu is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy and the graduate school of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He served in Taiwan and later in Vietnam as Signal Officer of the 173rd Airborne Brigade. He spent sixteen years of his military career as a Professor of Physics at the Academy. Following his retirement from the Army, he worked for twelve years with TRW, Inc., as a manager on the Department of Energy’s Nuclear Waste Project at Yucca Mountain in Nevada. He was mayor of our Town of Washington from 1994 to 2003.

Eve, I’m told, was a Rappahannock force of nature, a strong, powerful woman with immeasurable presence, much loved by everyone in the county. Stu tells of meeting her for the first time, he a young man at West Point, in his final year, when a buddy living in Front Royal set him up on a blind date. He was smitten the moment he met Eve. They married shortly after he graduated. She hailed from Rappahannock, from a well known family, raised on Mt. Prospect, her former home recently on the garden tour, her family line of Mueller fame, related to the Mt. Vernon Millers.

John Sullivan, former mayor of Little Washington, tells of Stu, of his “military bearing and discipline, a quiet, gentle sort who doesn’t make unnecessary noise. He did a great job as mayor,” John related, “under difficult circumstances and shepherded the town through challenges. He’s a real gentleman, a man’s man if you will.”

Yes, John, he is that and more. Such an honor and pleasure for me to meet him. Read his books, send him your reviews and watch him smile. Visit www.jstewartillis.com

He’s now published two highly regarded novels and readies for a third soon to hit the stands.

“Gestation Seven” and “Deadly Highway” are action packed, page turning mysteries. His third is a departure, “Three Degrees Fahrenheit, and Rising” is a futuristic, apoplectic  opus, taking place in 2087 and revolves around three families escaping massive coastal flooding in the United States, and follows their journey to Canada. His first two publications are available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Google Books and naturally locally at Rare Finds, the shop where once his beloved Eve showcased her interior design genius.

I had the honor of sitting down recently with Stu, and of course Charlie, his borzoi cross, and with Maryanne Jenkins, happily hovering in the kitchen, his all around dedicated helper, cooking and caring for him and his beloved quadruped.

We talked of his books, about his life. In his mid 80’s, he is a man of extraordinary pedigree. Stu is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy and the graduate school of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He served in Taiwan and later in Vietnam as Signal Officer of the 173rd Airborne Brigade. He spent sixteen years of his military career as a Professor of Physics at the Academy. Following his retirement from the Army, he worked for twelve years with TRW, Inc., as a manager on the Department of Energy’s Nuclear Waste Project at Yucca Mountain in Nevada. He was mayor of our Town of Washington from 1994 to 2003.

Eve, I’m told, was a Rappahannock force of nature, a strong, powerful woman with immeasurable presence, much loved by everyone in the county. Stu tells of meeting her for the first time, he a young man at West Point, in his final year, when a buddy living in Front Royal set him up on a blind date. He was smitten the moment he met Eve. They married shortly after he graduated. She hailed from Rappahannock, from a well known family, raised on Mt. Prospect, her former home recently on the garden tour, her family line of Mueller fame, related to the Mt. Vernon Millers.

John Sullivan, former mayor of Little Washington, tells of Stu, of his “military bearing and discipline, a quiet, gentle sort who doesn’t make unnecessary noise. He did a great job as mayor,” John related, “under difficult circumstances and shepherded the town through challenges. He’s a real gentleman, a man’s man if you will.”

Yes, John, he is that and more. Such an honor and pleasure for me to meet him. Read his books, send him your reviews and watch him smile. Visit www.jstewartillis.com

Chris Green
About Chris Green 163 Articles
Chris Green (formerly Chris Doxzen) is an an executive recruiter by profession who enjoys exploring and writing about all things Rappahannock. Friends and neighbors with potential stories for her Sperryville column should email her at chrisdoxzen@gmail.com.

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