Willa Mae "Billye" Norris, 88, a retired Philadelphia schoolteacher and opera singer, died of heart failure Tuesday, Oct. 9, at Simpson House, a nursing facility in West Philadelphia.
Mrs. Norris taught first and second grade in the Philadelphia School District for 37 years, serving at Robert Fulton and Rudolph Walton Elementary Schools. She retired in the 1980s.
She was active in the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers for many years.
Mrs. Norris also was an opera singer who performed as a soprano soloist with the Dra Mu Opera, a black opera company in the city; the Philadelphia Concert Orchestra; and the 52d Street Choirs at the African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas in West Philadelphia.