Willie M. Puryear, proud USAF veteran

February 21, 2021

Mr. Willie M. Puryear, 83, of Bridgeville passed away Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2021, at Bayhealth Hospital Sussex in Milford.

Willie was born in Skipwith, Va., to the late Willie and Matilda Pulliam Puryear. In addition to his parents, he is preceded in death by a daughter, Juanita; as well as eight siblings, Louise, Albert, Herman, Geraldine, Raymond, Otis, Marshall and Pearl.

He enlisted in the U.S. Air Force in 1957, and served until 1987 in an honorable and distinguished career, and was a veteran of Vietnam.   He retired at the rank of technical sgt.  He also was a 32nd degree Mason, member of Prince Hall, served as past master, and also was part of the Military Lodge 28 in Dover.  He was a member of the American Legion, and VFW Post 10157 in Salisbury, Md.  He loved Westerns, CSNBC, and had a great interest in politics.  He was a loving father, loving husband and a very hard worker.  He also served as a mentor in the Knights of Pythagoras.

Willie is survived by his devoted wife of 36 years, Helena Puryear of Bridgeville; and five children, Willie M. Puryear Jr., Robert Puryear and Theresa Puryear Armstrong and her husband Kennard, all of Atlanta, Ga., Robert Lee Jones, and Terry L. Jones and his wife Sandra, all of Seaford.  He leaves to cherish his memory 10 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren, as well as a host of nieces, nephews, extended family and friends.  

A funeral will be held at 10 a.m., Thursday, Feb. 25, at Watson Funeral Home, 211 S. Washington St., Millsboro, where friends may call from 9:30 to 10 a.m., for viewing and visitation.  A chapel service with military honors will follow at 11 a.m., at the Delaware Veterans Memorial Cemetery, 26669 Patriots Way, Millsboro. In accordance with the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, masks, social distancing and limited seating will be available.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to Home of the Brave Foundation, 6632 Sharps Road, Milford, DE 19963.

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