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William R. Ellis

May 14, 1929 ~ March 3, 2017 (age 87)

   William Roy Ellis, 87, of Corpus Christi, Texas, formerly  Quincy, died at 9:00 a.m. Friday (March 3, 2017) in his home.

   Born May 14, 1929 in Royal Oak, Michigan, Bill was the son of William R. and Lillian L. Ellis. He graduated from Royal Oak High School in 1947 and immediately enlisted in the Army Air Force. He completed basic training at Lackland Air Base in San Antonio, Texas and was transfered to Scott Air Force Base for training as a general radio mechanic, graduating in September 1948.

   Bill was deployed to Erding Air Depot in Erding, Germany where he spent the next 18 months with the 11th Signal Maintenance Teams (AVM which was later made the 11th CMO) installing and checking out instrument landing systems (ILS) and ground control approach systems (GCA) in support of the Berlin Airlift in all Allied zones occupied in Germany.

   After being Honorably Discharged, Bill enrolled under the GI Bill at DeVry Technical Institute graduating in 1953. He was employed for six years in Central Illinois at several commercial radio and television stations as a staff engineer. In 1960, Bill went to work for Gates Radio / Harris Corp. where he spent the next 15 years building and managing the company's worldwide technical service department. It was there that he met an executive secretary, Norma Jean Spry, who became his wife on December 29, 1967.  Bill retired from Ozarks Public Television in Springfield, Missouri in 1994 after 14 years as Vice President and Director of Engineering.

     Bill held a lifetime First Class FCC license and was a life member of the Society of Broadcast Engineers where he was certified as a Life Senior Broadcast Engineer. He was a life member of Herman Masonic Lodge No. 39, Quincy Consistory Scottish Rite, Abou Ben Adhem Shrine Temple in Springfield, Missouri, a life member of the Elks Lodge 1926 in Kingsville, Texas and a longtime member of St. John's United Methodist Church in Corpus Christi, Texas.

   Bill was a published author of many feature technical articles and wrote for professional publications such as T.V. Technology, Radio World, Broadcast Engineering and Broadcast Magazine.

   Bill and Norma Jean moved to Corpus Christi in 1994 after they vacationed there and fell in love with the community. They traveled extensively and loved to visit casinos to satisfy Bill's love of playing slot machines.

   Bill leaves behind a daughter by his first wife, Lisa Ann Shafer; a granddaughter, Emily Shafer; and a grandson, Adam Shafer all of Chicago, IL.

   He was preceded in death by his parents; and his beloved wife of 42 years, Norma Jean.

   Funeral services will be held Thursday morning at 11:00 in the Zehender Robinson Stormer Cookson Funeral Home.  Burial with Military Honors will be in Greenmount Cemetery.

   Visitation will be Thursday morning from 10:00 until the time of services at the funeral home.

   Memorials may be made to the ASPCA or Public Television.

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