Alexandra Willis Saxton

Published 5:04 pm Thursday, May 16, 2019

Alexandra Willis Saxton, loving and beloved wife, mother, daughter, granddaughter, sister, cousin and friend passed away peacefully at home Tuesday night, May 14, 2019, after battling cancer for nine months.  A lifelong Virginian with an insatiable curiosity for the world beyond our borders, Alex loved to explore near and far. Her travels took her to many countries on several continents, but she always kept a special place in her heart for her alma mater, the College of William and Mary. It was there she met her husband, Ben, with whom she would have a loving decade of marriage. They started their life together in Alexandria, where Alex taught English as a second language to students of all ages and nationalities. While expecting her first child, Soledad, her growing family moved to Richmond. As a passionate advocate for the immigrant community, she continued her work as an ESL teacher and became a coordinator for Chesterfield County. After the birth of her son Gael, Alex transitioned to her childhood dream of working in the medical profession. Ever the humanitarian, she began this new endeavor by volunteering as a medical interpreter for a free clinic. Shortly before her diagnosis, Alex and her family moved back to her hometown of Suffolk to pursue the next step in her medical degree: the physician’s assistant program at Eastern Virginia Medical School. Alex continued her pre-requisite coursework well past her diagnosis, a sign of her indefatigable spirit.

Alex will be missed by her husband, Benjamin Saxton-Ruiz; daughter, Soledad Elizabeth Saxton; son, Gael Alexander Saxton; parents, Leslie and Cynthia Willis; brother, Benjamin Willis (and wife Samantha); and myriad cousins, aunts, uncles and friends. 

A small, private service will be held on the Eastern Shore, with a larger celebration of Alex’s life taking place in Suffolk in the coming weeks.  Donations may be made in Alex’s memory to Crossover Healthcare Ministry, where she volunteered as a medical interpreter. 

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Arrangements were made by Doughty Funeral Home in Exmore.