Irene Willis Ludlow

April 11, 1928March 27, 2021
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Irene Willis Ludlow passed away peacefully on Saturday, March 27, 2021, at the age of 92.

She was born in the small town of Cowley Wyoming, the youngest of five children and the only daughter of Ellis and Marion Willis. After graduating high school in Cowley she attended the University of Wyoming and then transferred to BYU where she met her husband Ray Stewart Ludlow Sr. As the story goes, he proclaimed, “That’s the one for me!” and they spent 54 years together and were sealed for time and eternity in the Mormon temple.

Irene was immensely proud of her small-town upbringing surrounded by a large, loving extended family and four doting older brothers. Her parents taught the values of loyalty, faith, respect for others as well as love for family traditions and country. In times of trouble, she would always say “We came from pioneer stock and we will make it through.”

She was active in civic and school activities as well as in church. A woman of many talents, she enjoyed growing flowers and loved to cook and entertain. Her home was the center for celebrations big or small. A quick wit and storyteller, with a wonderful sense of humor, she always had a new joke to tell. Music was her love and she was blessed with a beautiful singing voice. Music filled her home and that passion was passed down through the generations.

She and her husband worked side by side as Distributors of Kirby Vacuums for well over 50 years. This gave them the opportunity to travel, winning trips all over the world and yet her favorite thing to do was to get outdoors in nature. A steak fry at Eagle Fern Park in Oregon or camping at Yale Lake in Cougar, Washington were simple pleasures that brought her joy.

Irene was preceded in death by her loving husband Ray. She is survived by her four children, daughter Cynthia Payne (Craig), and sons Stewart (Cindy), Sed and Scott (Nancy), several cousins, nieces, and nephews. She was Grandma to six grandchildren and Gigi to nine great-grandchildren.

A small graveside service will be held on April 8, 2021, at Willamette National Cemetery at 11:00 a.m. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests you make donations to the Alzheimer’s Association.


  • Committal Service

    Thursday, April 8, 2021


Irene Willis Ludlow

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Terry V Willis

April 8, 2021

Aunt Irene always loved that Stu and I were such close friends, She was proud of Stu and I because were liked each other so much and we acted like true first cousins. She was right, I did love my Ludlow cousins, all of them and still do to this day... The years of our lives have seemingly passed so fast, I hope somehow we can all love each other more than ever and find a way to get on some family reunions.

She was so proud of me when somehow I did the impossible and sold Kirby's to the Lady's that said I will ask my Husband when He gets home and then I will get back to you, somehow my sales were always that way... I loved Uncle Ray and Aunt Irene through it all, they were so much fun to talk to. I always thought of how much Grand Father and Grand Mother Willis loved all of us... Thanks for the fun memories.... I Love you all so much..

Todd Willis

April 3, 2021

When I think of my aunt Irene I always remember the family get togethers at Grandpa Willis's house in Cowley. The laughter and love, the shared stories by the Willis brothers and their little sister of gowing up together is a memory I will cherish forever. Aunt Irene was immensely proud of her Willis family and even more so of her Ludlow family.

Susan Willis Edwards

April 1, 2021

So sorry to hear of the passing of your wonderful Mom. She always had such great energy about her and I forever picture her smiling. Although we were not able to spend much time together through the years, I loved her dearly and was so proud to call her my Aunt. I'm sure glad our paths crossed on this side. See you on the other.