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Willis "Will" Potter '48 February 8, 2024 1:38 PM updated: February 8, 2024 2:25 PM

Willis Albert Potter 

June 22, 1927 - October 17, 2023 

Willis (Will) Albert Potter was born in Cleveland, Ohio on June 22, 1927 to Albert E. Potter and Helen Elizabeth Metzler Potter and passed away October 17, 2023 in Dallas, TX. He was 96 years old.

Will's family moved to Edinburg, TX right before the stock market fell in 1929. Will, along with his two older siblings, was raised on a citrus farm outside of Edinburg. He graduated from Edinburg High School in 1944 at the age of 16. Two weeks later he was on the train to College Station to enroll at Texas AMC. He was a member of C Battery Field Artillery and one of his first dorms was Walton Hall, which is still being used as a dorm today. Classes were meeting 6 days a week, all through the year since this was still during WWII. Will soon entered active duty with the US Navy and sent to Oakland, CA for naval aviation flight school. After the war ended, Will returned to A&M and using the GI Bill, he completed his studies and graduated in 1949 with a degree in chemical engineering.

Upon graduation, he accepted a job in Sweetwater, TX at US Gypsum Company. Soon after, Will and family returned to the Rio Grande Valley to help his father run the family farm. A few years passed, and Will became employed at Igloo Manufacturing in Houston and participated in the development of the first plastic coolers. This would be the beginning of Will's career in plastics. After Igloo, Will accepted a position with Gulf Oil Corporation in Orange, TX, in the their research and development department. Finally, in 1969, Will found his niche in sales engineering with Mercer Engineers, Inc., in Dallas, and a highly successful career selling plastic injection molding machinery.

Will had a passion for outdoor activities. He enjoyed hunting, camping, fishing (whether salt or freshwater), gardening, tennis (he played intramural tennis during his time at A&M), and spending time at the beach. Will enjoyed traveling and he and wife Nell spent many delightful evenings ballroom dancing with friends. He was always a devoted Aggie fan, through the good years and not as good years!

Will is survived by his loving wife Nell of 30 years, son Jamie Potter (Irene), son Carl Potter (Angie), daughter Helen Potter-Reader (George), son Robert Potter (Mary), and daughter Betsy White Maroney '80 (Mark '79). He was predeceased by his son Jon G. Potter '82. Will is also survived by thirteen grandchildren (including April E. Potter '97 and Amy Potter '09), many great-grandchildren and several nieces and nephews.

A celebration of Will's life will be held at a later date this spring. 


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