Creative, irreverent and generous, Willie was a pilot, a fisherman, and a winemaker, and it was clear that he never met a stranger.
Will Gerrior was born in Boston on December 5, 1938, and died at home on Vashon on June 3, 2020. He was diagnosed a few weeks earlier with advanced pancreatic cancer, and spent his last days with his loving family, on his farm on Vashon. At the age of 18, he joined the Air Force as a mechanic but learned to fly at a private flight school. He turned a part-time gig flying crop-dusters into a career with the airlines, retiring in 2000 as a Captain with Delta Airlines. In 1986 he and his wife Karen started Vashon Winery, which they sold after 25 years, having won several awards for their Washington grown wines.
He met Karen in 1968, when he was flying the Alaska-Seattle route for PNA, and running a somewhat illegal side-gig of bringing frozen crab in on his flights and selling it – just to friends, of course. She agreed to look the other way if he would supply her with a box, and he was smitten. Fly-fishing was among his many passions, and he stocked a trout pond on his property where he taught countless children how to fish. He was a volunteer firefighter and EMT, past President of the Vashon Sportsmen’s Club, and was airport Commissioner for the Vashon Municipal airport. In addition to his wife, he leaves behind his son Chance (Lisa), grandson Gerald, sister Marianne, brother Gerald, and many nieces and nephews.
We will miss his stories at family gatherings, wondering how he managed to survive his childhood. Just when you thought you’d heard them all, he’d surprise you with a new one. No formal services will be held at this time but donations can be made in his name to the Vashon Sportsmen Education Association or to your favorite outdoor organization.