Junior Lee Brill, 96, of Mtn. Grove, Missouri, passed away on Thursday, December 26, 2019, at his home.
He was born in Plato, Missouri, on March 11, 1923, the son of General Lee and Gladys (Scott) Brill. He began school in Astoria, after which the family moved to Houston, Missouri. He took one year off in high school to help his dad on the farm, finishing his education at Houston High School.
When our country went to war in World War II, he was proud to serve his country in the Air Corps of the Army, serving in the Philippines building roads and bridges, entering service as a private and leaving as a sergeant. After the war ended, he returned to the States and helped his father on the family farm before moving to St. Louis to work at the Chrysler Motor Company assembly plant where he worked several years before again returning home to help on the family farm. He began working for the Missouri State Highway Department in 1957 where his happy disposition earned him the nickname “Jolly Junior.”
In 1956, Junior met his bride and the love of his life, Ruby Arlene Williams. They were married on October 30, 1959 and made their home in Houston, Missouri. In 1961, they received what would prove to be the greatest joy of their life, their son, Edward. Junior’s job with the highway department took the family from Houston to Ava and then to Mountain Grove where they were still living at the time of his passing. He worked for the highway department until he retired in 1991 to help care for his father-in-law whom he loved dearly.
Junior and his wife were longtime members of First Freewill Baptist Church of Mountain Grove where over the years he was honored to serve as an usher, Sunday school teacher, and also served as Sunday school superintendent. Junior had a servant’s heart and he, along with his wife, felt called to a ministry of service to those in need in both their church and their community. He truly epitomized being the hands and feet of Christ.
Junior was preceded in death by his parents, General and Gladys Brill; brothers, Norman, Farris, and Scott Brill; and a sister, Ireta Brill Cole.
He is survived by his wife of 60 years and two months, Arlene Williams Brill; their son, Edward Brill and his wife, Sandy; a granddaughter, Bethany Brill James and her husband, Trevor; four great-granddaughters, Cadence, Kira, Gianna, and Maggie James; one brother, Wilbur Brill and his wife, Lorene; one sister, Carolyn Brill Collins and her husband, Steve; a dear cousin, Randy Wade; close friends and neighbors, Chris and Linda Pamperien; many nieces and nephews and many, many close friends. He will be missed by everyone who was blessed to know him and be part of his life, but no one will miss him more than his devoted wife and best friend, Arlene.
Visitation was held from 9:00 to 10:00 a.m. Monday, December 30, 2019, with services following at 10:00 a.m. at First Free Will Baptist Church in Mtn. Grove, with Matthew Todd and Gary Fry officiating. Pallbearers were Trevor James, Reed Blaker, Tom Cooley, Doyle VanGenderen, Chris Pamperien and Mike Brill. Honorary pallbearers were Gabe Todd, James Jones and Randy Wade. Interment was in Ozark Cemetery near Houston, Missouri, under the direction of Elliott-Gentry-Carder Funeral Home of Cabool, Missouri. Online condolences may be made at www.egcfuneralhome.com.
In lieu of flowers the family requests that donations be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital or to The Gideons.