Willard E. Pruitt III
December 21, 1940 – April 10, 2017
Willard E. Pruitt III, age 76, of Bethany Beach, DE, died suddenly on Monday, April 10, 2017.
A native Delawarean, Bill was born in Wilmington on December 21, 1940, and was the son of the late Willard E. Pruitt, Jr. and Marion (Marvel) Pruitt. He was a graduate of A.I. DuPont High School. A proud veteran of the U.S. Army, Bill served in the Old Guard at Arlington Cemetery where he led Black Jack, the riderless horse who was famous for his involvement in more than 1,000 armed forces burials, most notably the interment of President John F. Kennedy. After his honorable discharge, he worked as a pipefitter and maintenance planner for General Chemical in Claymont, DE, retiring after 33 years of employment.
Active in his community, Bill was a longtime member of Lafayette Lodge No. 14 A.F. & A.M, Delaware Consistory, Nur Temple Shrine, Masonic Motorcycle Club, Legion Riders, and the Blue Knights Delaware Chapter 1. Above all else, he was a devoted and loving husband, father, brother and grandfather who enjoyed spending time with family and friends and riding his beloved Harley. Bill will be lovingly missed by all who knew him.
Bill is survived by his wife of 49 years, Theresa F. “Terri” (Gerger) Pruitt; daughters, Lori Mitchem (Bob) of Middletown and Nicole Pruitt (Adam) of Bear; sisters, Ellen Pearce (Jack) of New Castle and Joan Williams (Tom) of Smyrna; grandchildren, Kourtney Mitchem and Jake Greenwood; and many nieces, nephews, extended family members, and close friends.
A visitation for family and friends will be held from 6:00 pm until 8:00 pm on Tuesday evening, April 18, 2017 at the Spicer-Mullikin Funeral Home, 1000 N. DuPont Parkway, New Castle, DE. A funeral service will be held at 11:30 am on Wednesday morning, April 19, 2017 at the funeral home. Interment will follow in the Delaware Veterans Memorial Cemetery, 2465 Chesapeake City Road, Bear, DE.
In lieu of flowers, contributions in Bill’s memory can be sent to Be The Match, 500 N 5th St., Minneapolis, MN 55401-1206.