William E. Launius, Sr.

September 29, 1943March 14, 2021
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William “Bill” Edward Launius Sr., 77, of Belleville, born in East St. Louis on September 29, 1943, passed away Sunday, March 14, 2021 at Cedarhurst in Waterloo IL, with his children by his side.

Bill was a member of First United Presbyterian Church in Belleville, IL. He enjoyed fishing in his quiet time. He was a great story teller and had a great laugh. Bill worked in the automotive industry most of his life, and founded Launius Marketing Specialists. He formed many friendships through his career. He enjoyed working with his hands and could always be found in his garage working on a project. Although he struggled with many health issues through the years, he always fought to overcome them. He didn’t know how to say ‘no’. Even after his stroke, he had a positive attitude and was pleasant and kind to everyone who helped him, and he learned to say “thank you”. His will to prevail inspires us all. He was a great husband, father, uncle, and dear friend. Most of all, he was a great “Pa” to his grandchildren. He was so proud of all of them. We will all treasure the many wonderful memories made with him.

Bill was preceded in death by his wife Susan, nee Haywood, Launius; his parents, Carl and Fern, nee McMullin, Launius; and his sister and brother-in-law Nancy and Darwin Kraft. He is survived by his son William (Joan) Launius Jr. of Millstadt; his daughter Lori (Ken) Harris of Waterloo; his grandchildren William “Trey” Launius III, Kasey Launius, Hunter Harris, Carter Harris, Tanner Harris, and Cooper Harris; nieces, nephews, cousins, and many friends.

Special thanks to Cedarhurst of Waterloo for their overwhelming generosity, care, and compassion; and to Mark Stein for his friendship and many visits over the last few years.

Friends may visit from 4-8 p.m. on Thursday, March 18, 2021 at Valhalla Gaerdner Holten Funeral Home in Belleville, IL. Funeral service is at 1:30 p.m. on Friday, March 19 at the funeral home with interment to follow at Valhalla Gardens of Memory. Memorials may be made to American Stroke Association at Family can be notified of on-line memorials at Condolences may be expressed to the family online at

With St. Clair County COVID mandate in place, guests will be required to wear masks and the maximum number of 50 guests will allow for proper social distancing. We appreciate your patience during these unique times.


  • Susan (Nee Haywood) Launius, Wife (deceased)
  • Carl Launius, Father (deceased)
  • Fern (nee McMullin) Launius, Mother (deceased)
  • Nancy Kraft, Sister (deceased)
  • Darwin Kraft, Brother-in-law (deceased)
  • William Launius, Jr. (Joan), Grandson
  • Lori Harris (Ken), Daughter
  • William “Trey” Launius III, Grandchild
  • Kasey Launius, Grandchild
  • Hunter Harris, Grandchild
  • Carter Harris, Grandchild
  • Tanner Harris, Grandchild
  • Cooper Harris, Grandchild


  • Visitation

    Thursday, March 18, 2021

  • Funeral Service

    Friday, March 19, 2021

  • Graveside Service

    Friday, March 19, 2021


William E. Launius, Sr.

have a memory or condolence to add?

Rick Sedlak

March 22, 2021

Billy and Lori,
I know this is finding after the service but I felt I needed to stop and let you know how sorry I am for your loss. When Billy reached out to me this morning to let me know, it took the total wind out of my sails. I know your dad had some issues but I never thought they were to this extent. He was great person and along with your mom we had some great times together. Your dad was always eager to share his latest project with me when I would stop by. I remember when your mom said he had an opportunity to be a part of RPR. I thought he walked on water after that. Please accept my dearest sympathy. Rick

Douglas Lasure

March 20, 2021

Bill and I started off as coworkers and quickly became friends. As a young man coming up in the industry I always could turn to Bill for guidance. Thank you for taking the time to share your wisdom with me. You will be missed.

Larry Webster

March 18, 2021

I have known Bill my whole life.we lived in the same neighborhood in E St Louis and continued our friendship through the years.
Sorry for your loss

Kim Zellers

March 17, 2021

Lori Harris and family,
So very sorry for your loss. I had the pleasure of knowing both your dad and your mom. Such a blessing to be a small part of both of their journey. Two very special individuals. Bill was one of the strongest human beings I’ve ever known. His zest and determination to overcome any obstacle that came into his path was nothing short of amazing, always keeping a smile on his face. Your dad, will never be forgotten, his voice and his laugh will be greatly missed, He will always hold a special place in my heart, from the friendship that we shared. God bless you and your family at this time, and all the days forward. May God touch you with peace and comfort, and give you the faith that one day you shall all be together again. Bill will never be forgotten, I’m grateful for the memories we shared. Till we meet again my friend.
God Bless


March 17, 2021

On behalf of CEMB-USA, we want to express our sympathy at this time of loss for the family. Bill was a great influencer on me personally in my early years with CEMB-USA and provided great insight to me on our equipment and how to sell it.

Chip Gray

March 16, 2021

Launius family,
I have known Bill for a long time. I worked with his Dad Carl at Obear Nester while I was in High school. Bill helped coach our Freshman football team. After practice he would give me a ride downtown in his 1957 Chevy and open up his pipes. It was a fun and raucous time.
Chip Gray

Jerome Lacy

March 16, 2021

I was a friend in high school and always enjoyed Bill’s company . Condolences

Stacey Roark

March 16, 2021

Lori and Family,
So sorry for your loss. Bill was one of a kind. The world lost one hell of a guy. Both Bill and Sue were the best neighbors a person could ask for. Your dad was smart, funny, kind, hard working, and had the biggest heart. My heart is breaking for you. We are hear for you!

Love ya,
The Roarks

Niccy Cook

March 16, 2021

Lori & Bill I am so sorry for your loss. Have such good memories of your family.

Love you!!