Billy Ray Stokes, 69, passed away Wednesday, February 28

Billy Ray Stokes, 69, of Benton Harbor, passed away Wednesday, February 28, 2018 at Lakeland Medical Center in St. Joseph.

A Celebration of Life Homegoing Service will be held 11:00 A.M. Wednesday, March 7, 2018 at Blue Roof Church, 3084 Niles Rd., St. Joseph, with Rev. Dan Miller officiating. Military Rites will be conducted by the North Berrien Military Rites Team.  Burial will follow at Prospect Hills Cemetery in Cassopolis, Michigan.  Friends may visit with the family from 10:00 until 11:00 A.M. Wednesday at the Church.  Memorials in Billy’s name may be made to the Blue Roof Church.  Those wishing to sign Billy’s Memory Book online may do so at

Billy was born August 29, 1948 in Spring Hope, North Carolina to Harmon & Vallie (Taybron) Stokes.  He graduated from Spencer High School in Spencer, Georgia, Class of 1966.  Billy served his country in the United States Army as a helicopter pilot during the Vietnam War.  Billy was employed at Firmanite Inc. in Virginia for several years before moving to Benton Harbor.  He was employed at Cook Nuclear for several years before gaining employment with Whirlpool Corp. from where he retired.  On February 12, 1992, he married the former Lucille Goins in St. Joseph.  Billy was a member of Blue Roof Church, the VFW, and a volunteer with Real Heros of Benton Harbor.  In his free time, he enjoyed fishing, eating Lucille’s cooking, the time spent with his family and many friends, and classic cars, especially his 1956 T-Bird.

Billy is survived by his wife Lucille;  his daughter Brittia Morrisette of Portsmouth, VA; two step-sons-Mario Manuel Goins of South Bend, IN & Landrum Lamarr Morrisette; four grandchildren-Damaya Dabrel, Demarrco Rayquan, Malashia Diamond & Mayla Pearl Morrisette; and a host of in-laws, aunts, uncles, cousins, friends too numerous to mention; and his canine companion Cheery.  Billy was preceded in death by his parents.

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