Carroll Ray Falls of Kentwood, Mich., went home to the one who created him on Tuesday, July 14, 2020, in Grand Rapids, Mich., after a short but fierce battle with cancer. 

He was born in 1945 in Pine Bluff, Ark., to Leo Wilson Falls and Mary Louise “Myrie” Faraldo Falls. 

He graduated from Pine Bluff High School and was a proud University of Arkansas Razorback graduating in 1968 with a degree in Electrical Engineering with Honors. He earned two advanced degrees from Southern Methodist University, a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering and an Executive MBA. 

Carroll worked in the defense industry almost his entire career. He started at Texas Instruments in Richardson, Texas, and retired from GE Aviation in Grand Rapids, Mich. During his 45 year engineering career he worked on many projects including the Marinar Mars space program. He worked on the F-16 program, built missiles, portable x-ray machines, black boxes and held a Top-Secret security clearance. The program of which he was most proud was the ASR-8 air traffic control radar system still controlling airspace traffic today. 

In March 1968 he met Pauletta Lynn Stanphill at the University of Arkansas. They married just four months later in July of 1968. On the day they married, her father told her, “Right or wrong, I’m on your side.”  She quickly figured out that Carroll was cut from the same cloth as her father and would forever be her champion, right or wrong. They celebrated their 52nd wedding anniversary on July 4 of this year. 

He is survived by his wife, whom he always called “My Love”, and his three children, Dr. Travis L. Falls and Amie Metz of Hanover, Park, Ill., Shannon LaRae Falls and Todd Garrett of San Antonio,  and Nathan S. and Julie DeBoer Falls of Grand Rapids, Mich.; and a special niece, Gwendolyn Kay Falls of Wylie, Texas.

 He was blessed with one grandchild, Avery Lyn Falls of Grand Rapids, Mich.

Carroll was a loving father who encouraged his children in all their activities, endeavors, and educational pursuits. He always placed his family first before his own needs until his last breath. None of Carroll’s cats or children ever went hungry or did without. He was generous with his time and money and was always helping out anyone in need. Over the years he and Lynn adopted countless feline fur-children, of which Treevon and April chose him as their favorite person. During his retirement years he assisted Lynn with her volunteer efforts with feral cat rescues. They provided transportation for cats belonging to people who needed help getting their cats spayed or neutered. They once traveled to the Indiana/Kentucky border to rescue cats from an overcrowded shelter.

Other survivors include his sister and brother-in-law, Debbie Stanphill Case and Roger Case of Huntsville; brother-in-law, David Stanphill of Fayetteville, Ark.; nieces and nephews Eric V. Falls, Bailey Stanphill, Chanel Pennington, Jay Michael Stanphill and Jimmie Koonce; and many first cousins of whom he had many fond memories. 

Family rumor has it that Lynn actually married him for his first cousins. 

Preceded in death by his parents and only brother, Waymon Keith Falls. 

Eventual internment will be at the Huntsville Cemetery in Huntsville, Ark.  

A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020, at Zaagman Memorial Chapel, 2800 Burton Street SE, Grand Rapids, Mich. 49546.  

Visitation will be from 1-2 p.m. prior to the service.  

In lieu of flowers, please make donations in Carroll’s name to Focus on Ferals at 7962 Clyde Park SE, Byron Center, Mich. 49315 or Crash’s Landing at 1545 Diamond Ave. NE, Grand Rapids, Mich. 49505.

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