Tony Willis passed away after a short battle with cancer early on the morning of July 25, 2019 at his sister’s home in Meridian, Idaho. Tony’s mother, Elvena Minic, and family members were at his bedside supporting him in his transition.
Tony was born on November 9, 1958 in Jerome, Idaho and was raised in Glenns Ferry, Idaho by his parents, George and Elvena. During high school, Tony lettered in and attended state basketball and track (triple jump). His love of music motivated him to form a band in high school where they played at numerous school and community activities. Tony was a proud member of the graduating class of 1977.
Growing up on a ranch six miles east of Glenns Ferry, Tony raised and showed cattle for nine years at the Elmore County Fair. With his adoring grandparents’ (George and Maxine Larsen) support, he also showed cattle at the Denver Nugget winning Grand Champion Hereford and Reserve Champion Overall. After graduation, Tony attended the University of Idaho before moving to California for 12 years working in medical labs. His family and the great outdoors drew Tony back to Idaho where he eventually spent 23 years irrigating, haying, and calving for Colyer Herefords and Angus in Bruneau.
A quiet child and man, Tony never had a lot to say until he became ill, and his determination and feistiness arose if his mom, sisters or nieces mothered him more than his liking. You could always find Tony reading a book and he especially enjoyed western novels.
Tony’s family would like to thank his adopted family, the Colyers (Ray, Bonnie, Guy, Sherry, Katie, Kyle, Bobby Jean, Piper & Cruz), for their love and support over the last two decades.
St. Lukes Hospice and BrightStar Care provided support and care to Tony and his family throughout his illness.
Tony was received in heaven by his dad and grandparents.
Tony will be greatly missed by his loving mother, Elvena Minic, his younger and sometimes “bossy” sisters, Gena (Brad) Russell, Julie (Mike) Fortier, Judy Lemieux, Jill (Todd) Holmes, and his little brother, Tim (Amber) Willis, and numerous nieces and nephews.
A viewing will be held Monday, July 29th, starting at 9:15 a.m. at the Bruneau American Legion Hall followed by a funeral service at 10:00 a.m. A lunch gathering will follow the services. Graveside Service at 1:00 p.m. at Glen Rest Cemetery in Glenns Ferry.
Memorials in Tony’s name may be made to the Glenns Ferry High School Boys’ Basketball program.