Lloyd was born in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada. He lived there until he was nine years old. Then the family moved to Burbank, California where he was raised. He attended Burroughs High, participating in football and baseball, injuring his knees. There, he met his high school sweetheart (and future wife.) In the off-seasons, he worked at his sweetheart’s father’s restaurant until he was drafted. While in Basic Training, his injured knees prohibited him from graduating, so he was discharged. Back to the restaurant and his high school sweetheart – Mingale. They got married in June 1967 and moved to Seattle. He got a job at A&W fast food restaurant in North Seattle. The next year, his father-in-law followed him and bought the Twin Teepees restaurant on Aurora, across from Green Lake, so Lloyd switched jobs. Several Patrol and Traffic Units ate there and began recruiting him.
Lloyd joined the Department on July 17, 1970. He attended Academy Class #65 at Providence Heights in Issaquah. There, he told his Academy mates that he preferred to be called by his middle name – Lloyd, not his first name – Phillip. So, his peers christened him “Willey”. During his time in the Academy, what the Department, nor the Academy instructors did not know was Willey owned the Hula Hut burger joint. He was cooking there on the weekends, and sometimes during the workday nights if his night cooks didn’t show.
After graduation, he was assigned to East Central, 3rd Watch Relief. He and Brian Englin #2926 teamed up. One shift, while eating in George’s Tops Restaurant, in came a cab driver carrying a leg prothesis on his shoulder. He told Brian and Willey that a suspect had just hijacked his cab after a struggle. The suspect was outside in the load zone, having trouble getting the cab moving because he only had one (functioning) leg. Both Brian and Willey rushed out. Brian opened the driver door and began pulling the struggling suspect out, but his one leg got hooked up under the seat. Willey entered from the passenger door and began trying to pull the leg free when it came off. What to do with a drunk Double-amputee? They first carried the suspect to the prowl car, then gave the cabbie his vehicle back. And finally, the suspect got his two legs back after serving his time in the Drunk Tank.
A couple of years later, Willey was walking a night beat when he caught a guy urinating in an alley. Willey walked up to the drunk as he turns and sees Willey. The suspect kicks at Willey, who blocks the kick by grabbing the leg – déjà vu, or a Monty Python skit – the leg came off. Willey held the prothesis. Then the suspect grabbed ahold of a dumpster, thinking he’s Bruce Lee, attempted another kick with his remaining leg. He fails, and falls to the ground and that leg came off. Willey looked at him and said, “have you learned your lesson?” Then he walked away while the drunk got up on his stumps and yelled, “Come back here and fight like a man.”
Willey went to the North Precinct in 1978, working with Larry Harvey #3352 and later, with Dale Gibbons #3103 on 3Nora7. Dale and Willey took notice of troublesome paper delivery boys who made a lot of noise in the early morning hours. Sometimes they would borrow a use tire from Gary’s Tire and roll it down Roosevelt Way, trying to hit the cars leaving the Lucky Lady Tavern and the Flame. Willey and Dale got on the kids, stopping their mischief, and insured they started attending school, not hanging around the 7-11, playing electronic games and pinball. One of these street urchins not only turned his life around, but became a Seattle Police Explorer, later a dispatcher, and finally a police officer. It’s Eric Michl #4494. He even got to work as a partner with Willey years later – one of Eric’s career high points.
All the time Willey worked nights, so he could coach kids’ sports – baseball, basketball, and soccer – all girls’ teams. Lou Piniella was his model. He would challenge the official, disputing calls. His wife, Mingale would cringe in the stands, pretending not to know Willey. She would ask him, why do you carry on so much. Willey would reply, because “the Team needs to know I support them – if they play hard I have to coach hard.” He earned frequent technical penalties.
He, himself played lots of sports on the Department – golf, bowling, and softball. He was also the pitcher for the Twin Teepees baseball team. One double-header, he continuously disputed the umpires’ calls. Finally, she ejected him from the game. As he walked into the stands, she then ejected him from there. So, Willey went to this car, put on a hat, a wig, and a jacket, and returned to the stands to watch. When the second game started, he jumped out of the stands, shed his disguise, and approached the pitcher’s mound. The umpire stopped him, reminding him that he had been ejected. Willey replied, “Yes, but only for my behavior in the first game.” The umpire relented, but she warned Willey, saying, “One word from you, your team forfeits.” He pitched his first silent game.
Willey finished out his career at the Seattle Center. There, he met Steve Robinson, a principal in Mac Amusement. They became good friends, golfing year-round. Frequently, they flew to Steve’s winter home in Arizona to play golf. One morning, Willey was walking around the house’s swimming pool which was bordered by a cactus garden. He was so busy counting his betting roll, that he brushed against one of the cactus plants. He got stuck by several needles from his shoulder down to his leg. The pain caused him to jump back all the way into the pool. He was soaked and so was the bank roll. He went into Steve’s kitchen and tried to dry out the $100 bills in the microwave. Mark Henry #5137 walked in and saw this, and saw Willey dripping water all over the floor. Willey says, “What’s your issue? Haven’t you seen a microwave before?” Mark replied, “Not cooking $100 bills. Is this why you are no longer in the restaurant business, you burned through all your money?”
Willey retired in 2003 after 33 years of service. In retirement, he became an even more an avid golfer. He was dedicated to his family. He assisted his children by babysitting the grandchildren, and taking them to various kids’ functions.
Mingale, Willey’s wife of 35 years preceded him in death. He is survived by his daughters, Laurrah, Kymmberlee, and Heather; his sons, Brad, John, and Greg; and six grandchildren.
Seattle Pension Office