On November 14th the world lost a very good man.
Starting on January 11, 1920 in rural Chelan, Washington, Willis Sawyer began to take on life with fierce independence. He was on his own from early in his teens and by his 21st birthday he was a trained electrician in Chicago. He eventually returned to Washington and made his way to Idaho in the late 1950’s. For over 30 years he worked for Peter Kiewit & Sons construction company where he was a superintendent on many of the initial freeway projects across Southern Idaho. As a manager, he mastered the balance of the highest quality work, making a profit, and taking care of those who worked for him.
But the more defining Willis Sawyer was the one who married Floralee Sawyer on Feb 19th, 1960. He loved and helped raise her four children, fathered, loved and raised two of their own, traveled the world, loved many grandchildren and great grandchildren, and loved her with all his being until she died in 2000. The one who found a new love and partner -Song - in 2003, continued to travel, continued to tell stories, continued to enjoy family, continued to enjoy life. The one who barely finished elementary school but taught himself how to be a successful business leader and a successful investor. The one who ended up in almost as many countries as his 97 years, loved to collect money, loved to golf, loved to read, loved to study the world. The unpretentious, kind, and compassionate soul.
He will be missed tremendously by his daughter Jeanne Jenkins, his sons Mike Sawyer, Jim Kennedy, and Bill Kennedy, by their spouses, by his grandchildren, and by Song. Fiercely independent to the very end - "leave me alone, I'm ok" - I love you Dad.