Cover photo for Brian Joseph Willis's Obituary
Brian Joseph Willis Profile Photo

Brian Joseph Willis

March 23, 1964 — February 18, 2024


Brian Joseph Willis, passed away on Sunday, February 18, 2024, at CarePartners Solace House Hospice. He was born on March 23, 1964, in Dade County, Florida. Brian moved to North Carolina as a child, and graduated from Watauga High School in Boone.   He attended Appalachian State University, earning an undergraduate degree in physics and then received his MBA from UNC-Wilmington.  


Brian dedicated his career to serving as the Vice-President and Chief Information Officer of Asheville-Buncombe Tech Community College. His lifelong passion for knowledge led him to find fulfillment in the field of education.


Outside of work, Brian found joy in simple pleasures. He had a deep love for nature and could often be found hiking and enjoying the great outdoors. Brian felt very blessed to call Western North Carolina home. 


Brian was preceded in death by his parents, Robert and Mary Isaac Willis. He is survived by his wife of 32 years, Laura Grogan Willis, his son Zachary Matthew Willis of Black Mountain, his sister Kristin Harmon (Mike) of Sugar Grove, NC, and his brothers Jeff Brannon (Jackie) of Duncan, OK, and Gary Brannon of Gainesville, FL; and numerous nieces and nephews.


A Memorial Service to honor and celebrate Brian's life will be held on Saturday, February 24, 2024, at the Canton Chapel of Wells Funeral Home in Canton, North Carolina with the Reverend Becky Brown, Dr. John Gossett, President of Asheville-Buncombe Tech, and Cris Harshman, Interim Vice-President/IT and CIO of Asheville-Buncombe Tech, officiating. The service will begin at 11:00 a.m. and the family will receive friends following the Memorial Service at the funeral home.  


Brian Joseph Willis will be deeply missed by all who had the pleasure of knowing him. May he rest in peace knowing that he made a significant impact on those around him with his kindness, dedication, and love for life.


In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to CarePartners Solace House Hospice, P.O. Box 25338, Asheville, NC  28813, or the charitable organization of your choice.


The care of Mr. Willis has been entrusted to Wells Funeral Home of Canton and an online memorial register is available at "Obituaries" at

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Brian Joseph Willis, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Memorial Service

Saturday, February 24, 2024

Starts at 11:00 am (Eastern time)

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Canton Chapel of Wells Funeral Home

3715 Asheville Hwy
Canton, NC 28716

*Standard text messaging rates apply.


Saturday, February 24, 2024

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Wells Funeral Home - Canton

3715 Asheville Highway
Canton, NC 28716

Visitation will follow Memorial Service

*Standard text messaging rates apply.


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