Rev. Richard L. Wille, retired Baptist minister

November 27, 1994|By Joe Nawrozki | Joe Nawrozki,Sun Staff Writer

The Rev. Richard Lyle "Dick" Wille, a Baptist minister who served the community of Armistead Gardens in Northeast Baltimore for many years, died Wednesday of a heart attack at a hospital near Lehigh, Pa. He was 65.

Mr. Wille, who lived in Odenton, had been the minister at the Northeast Baptist Church at 1400 Horner's Lane for 17 years until his retirement in 1992.

"He enjoyed visiting people who were sick, troubled," said his wife, the former Joan Yamada. "He was a very compassionate man, always there when they needed him."

Mr. Wille was a native of Toledo, Ohio, where he graduated from Whitmer High School.

During the Korean War he served in the Army Security Agency in Hawaii.

He moved to the Baltimore area after leaving the military, working as a civilian at the National Security Agency at Fort Meade from 1956 until 1972.

A son, Kerry Dean Wille of Arnold, said his father headed a department before he left the agency's employment to join the ministry.

"All of his work in the Army and at NSA was top secret and he never talked about it, even years after he left NSA," Mrs. Wille said.

pTC "Some of his friends remarked that it was such a switch from intelligence to the ministry, but he felt all along the church was his calling," she said, adding that "his family was always devout, quite religious."

Before assuming the ministry in Northeast Baltimore, Mr. Wille served an interim pastorship at Dundalk Baptist Church, at the same time taking courses in the Christian ministry. He had no formal college education.

One of Mr. Wille's specialties was working with computers, and he served as a volunteer on the subject in the Anne Arundel County public school system. Arundel Middle School was one of the schools where he volunteered.

Fishing and following the Washington Redskins and auto racing were among his hobbies.

A memorial service is scheduled for 7 p.m. today at the Severn Baptist Church, Telegraph Road at Donald Avenue in Severn.

In addition to his wife and son, survivors include a daughter, Cheryl L. Wille of Annapolis; another son, Derek Layne Wille of Arlington, Va.; two sisters, Delores "Dottie" Granlund of Toledo, Ohio, and Eileen Blockinger of Prescott, Ariz.; a brother, Robert D. "Bud" Wille of Decatur, Ill., and two grandchildren.

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