01-18-2013, 09:43 PM #1
TN - Nancy Debra Willis, 25, Bradley County, 23 Dec 1986
Debra was last see by her family in Gate City, Virginia on December 23, 1986, as she was visiting for Christmas. She was to return home in Ringgold, Georgia, and her family never heard from her again, which is unusual.
Her right leg was previously fractured in circa eight places from a car accident.
She is listed as from Bradley County Tennessee
01-18-2013, 09:48 PM #2
01-18-2013, 10:12 PM #3
Really interesting article about her husband:
"Nancy Debra Willis was last seen by her family at the end of December, 1986, during the
Christmas holiday. Nancy had arrived at her mother's home with her children on Friday, December 19, 1986 and spent the first day getting settled in for the holiday festivities . Her husband, Howard Hawk Willis, was supposed to be in Bradley, Tennessee, working on the new home they were building there. Howard and Nancy lived in Ringgold, Georgia, but Howard wanted to re-locate to Tennessee because his family was there. Likely this was allright with Debbie, as it wouldn't distance her much farther from her own family in Virginia.
Nancy Debra Winegar was raised in Yuma, Virginia, which is in Scott County, Virginia. Her older sister Gertrude remembers fondly the years they spent growing up together. "Everyone thought she belonged to me," she says, recalling the close relationship she had with her baby sister Debbie, "She wasn't wild, she never got into any trouble. My husband did shift work so she loved to spend the evening with me and my boys. She would cook. If she wanted to go to the mall and couldn't find someone to go with her, she would take Daddy." Gertrude recalls."
more at link:
01-18-2013, 10:19 PM #4
01-20-2013, 03:27 PM #5Registered User
- Join Date
- Jan 2009
I'm just trying to think of what possible motive Howard could have had for killing the two teenagers. It seems they were friends of his kids'. I'm racking my brain and I really can't think of anything, unless there was perhaps something sexual between him and the girl?
As for Debbie - my interest piqued at the leg fractured in 8 places, because I too badly broke my leg and had to get a metal rod. However, that was in 2005, when the technology was very different than the mid-80s. I would think that Debbie also needed a surgical rod, but in those days, were the rods supposed to be forever or would she have needed to get it looked into at some future point? If so, I would think they could ask around various hospitals, to see if a woman of Debbie's description ever came around looking for medical care. Certainly there can't be that many individuals with surgical rods?
02-17-2013, 12:58 PM #6
Sounds like HHW's mother was quite a piece of work. (The apple doesn't fall from the tree?)
I came across an article from the Atlanta Journal Constitution dated Oct 20, 2002, but it was posted on a message board so I can't link it here. (Maybe someone can find the link through the AJC? )
In the article it mentioned that the young couple had just gotten married in August 2002 and were temporarily living at Betty's house (Emma Elizabeth Hawk, AKA Betty Willis). There was speculation that HHW knew the couple through drugs, but no one knew for sure why they were staying at his mother's house. A local sheriff was quotes as saying that there were pornographic images of the young couple found at Betty's house. He also said that Betty was a terror and that all of the neighbors were afraid of her.
It seems that Betty died in 2009 before she could be tried. (She and her son were great at delaying legal proceedings. )
I hope they eventually find Debbie's body. It could be anywhere in that general region. I also wonder if there are any other murder victims out there that could be linked to Howard. He was a long haul trucker.
I see that there is a thread on him here:
Last edited by KateB; 04-08-2015 at 01:58 PM. Reason: repair url tag.Any man's death diminishes me,
Because I am involved in mankind,
Therefore, send not to know, for whom the bell tolls;
It tolls for thee.
03-03-2013, 12:27 PM #7
02-17-2015, 12:58 PM #8Registered User
- Join Date
- Jul 2011
- Fairfield, Nelson Co, Ky USA
Debra's husband has a thread in Serial Killers.
It looks like he just may have had a good reason to kill the young couple:
In the documents filed Dec. 8, Willis said the evidence in Thomas' murder case included a letter that Samantha Chrismer wrote stating Adam Chrismer and her brother, Daniel Foster, robbed and killed Thomas and set Willis up for the crime.
08-18-2015, 02:38 AM #9Registered User
- Join Date
- Oct 2014
"Sister-in-law of Howard Hawk Willis opens up about missing sister"
The family filed a missing persons report in two states.
“Nobody did anything, so the search effort didn’t amount to much,” said Allen.
Days turned into weeks, and weeks turned into years. Allen said, “it’s gone so cold, it’s frozen.”
The ’90’s go by with no word from Debbie or Howard.
But in 2002, the name Howard Hawk Willis became well known across the Tri-Cities.
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