Nancy Wells Willard, 77, met her husband on the basketball court

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Nancy Wells Willard
Nancy Wells Willard

HAMPSTEAD — Nancy Wells Willard, 77, of Hampstead, N.C., peacefully went to be with her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2016. She fought a courageous battle with sarcoma for three and a half years.

Nancy was born in Teachey, N.C., on September 28, 1939, the daughter of the late William and Ruby Wells. She was a member of the first graduating class of Wallace-Rose Hill High School, where she excelled in basketball. She went on to play at Campbell College where she met her husband, Bob, on the basketball court.

Nancy and Bob lived the first 17 years of their married life in Riverside, N.J., where they raised their children until moving to Knoxville, Tenn., in 1976. Thirteen years and several moves later, Bob and Nancy, moved to the Wilmington area to be closer to Nancy’s family. She was an excellent seamstress and started her own business soon after the birth of their first child. She enjoyed sewing for the public and met many wonderful friends along the way.

She also had a great love of music that began when her Aunt Irene taught her to play the piano and organ at a young age. She majored in music, taught piano and continued to play in church throughout her life. As a member of Scotts Hill Baptist Church, she was very involved in the Ketchumites Sunday School Class. One of her greatest joys was watching her grandchildren participate in their various activities. Nancy was a wonderful wife, mother, grandmother and friend to all who knew her.

Left to cherish her memory are her husband of 57 years, Robert W. Willard; her children, Bryan Willard of Fargo, N.D., Sandra Stevens (John) of New Braunfels, Texas, and Jill Sullivan (Richard) of Hampstead, N.C.; her eight grandchildren, who affectionately called her “Mom Mom,” Brooklyn, Sydney, Shelby, Sara Kathryn, Jarrin, Jake, Jackson and Julia; her brother, Fred Wells (Jean) of Wilmington, N.C.; her sister, Marjorie Hinson (David) of Kinston, N.C.; along with several nieces and nephews.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, Nov. 26, at 11 a.m. at Scotts Hill Baptist Church, 185 Scotts Hill Loop Road, Wilmington, with Rick Ketchum officiating. Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, he praises her, “Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.” Charm is deceptive and beauty is fleeting, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. Proverbs 31:28-30.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be sent to Lower Cape Fear Hospice, 1414 Physicians Drive, Wilmington, NC, 28401.

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