July 27, 2005: Headlines: COS - Venezuela: Obituaries: Hartford Courant: Venezuela RPCV Willard R. Prior, Jr., tireless champion of the poor and oppressed of the world, dies in New Mexico

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Venezuela: Peace Corps Venezuela : The Peace Corps in Venezuela: July 27, 2005: Headlines: COS - Venezuela: Obituaries: Hartford Courant: Venezuela RPCV Willard R. Prior, Jr., tireless champion of the poor and oppressed of the world, dies in New Mexico

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Venezuela RPCV Willard R. Prior, Jr., tireless champion of the poor and oppressed of the world, dies in New Mexico

Venezuela RPCV Willard R. Prior, Jr., tireless champion of the poor and oppressed of the world, dies in New Mexico

He began a teaching career with positions in Hawaii and upstate New York and then, at age 30, joined the Peace Corps, went to Venezuela and began his lifetime of service. He spent years in Vietnam with the Agency for International Development (USAID) and then moved onto U.N. refugee camps in Sudan and Philippines. He returned to the U.S. and settled in the southwest. He found what he felt was his true calling, working with Witness For Peace in Central America, principally war torn Nicaragua, to alleviate suffering and document abuse.

Venezuela RPCV Willard R. Prior, Jr., tireless champion of the poor and oppressed of the world, dies in New Mexico

Prior, Willard R, Jr.

Hartford Courant
Hartford, Conn.
July 27, 2005

Willard R. Prior, Jr., tireless champion of the poor and oppressed of the world, died Monday, (July 18, 2005) in Albuquerque, NM from complications of Parkinson's Disease. Through the quiet force of his example and will, he enriched the lives of generations in Asia, Europe, Central, and South America and throughout the United States. His clear moral view led him on a constant search for peace and justice for all of God's children. Will Prior was born in Oneida, NY on June 5, 1929. He was the son of teachers, Willard F. Prior, Superintendent of Schools in Oneida and Alice (Bennet) Prior. A star student and athlete in high school, he went to Princeton where he played football, basketball, was the captain of the baseball team and Vice-President of his class. After two years in the Air Force and a short stretch in professional baseball he returned to Colgate for a Masters degree in history. He began a teaching career with positions in Hawaii and upstate New York and then, at age 30, joined the Peace Corps, went to Venezuela and began his lifetime of service. He spent years in Vietnam with the Agency for International Development (USAID) and then moved onto U.N. refugee camps in Sudan and Philippines. He returned to the U.S. and settled in the southwest. He found what he felt was his true calling, working with Witness For Peace in Central America, principally war torn Nicaragua, to alleviate suffering and document abuse.

He became a protester for morality in government and continued that effort as long as his health allowed. Camp Dudley on Lake Champlain in Westport, NY was his home base and he returned there year after year, teaching, coaching, singing, dancing and encouraging generations of young men to ``put the other fellow first''. Along this journey he gained a massive family of friends. They are his legacy and are bound together by their love for him and, not in small part, by his prodigious letter writing. Even in his last difficult weeks he continued to touch lives, bringing inspiration and resolve to his visitors and to the wonderful care givers at the Veterans Hospital in Albuquerque. He is survived by his sister, Betsy and her husband Jack Raycroft of South Glastonbury; nephews, Jack Raycroft, Jr. and his wife Laurie of Swampscott, MA, Ted Raycroft and his wife Audrey of Sherborn, MA, Tim Raycroft of Jamaica Plain, MA; a niece, Kate Raycroft-Meyer and her husband Peter Meyer of Bristol, VT; and eight grand-neph ews; and grand-nieces. Memorial services will be held In Albuquerque and Westport, NY with times to be arranged. A Memorial Service Monday, August 22, at 10 a.m. in the First Methodist Church, Main St., Oneida, NY. Burial will follow in Glenwood Cemetery, Oneida.





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Story Source: Hartford Courant

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Venezuela; Obituaries

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