The ‘Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas’ sign is as famous as the city itself. In just five words, it conveys excitement, revelry, debauchery. It’s everything great design should be.
|Betty Whitehead Wills|
The woman who created that iconic sign was Betty Whitehead Willis, who died earlier this week. Born in Overton, Nev., in 1924, she was 91 years old, according to an obituary published on the website of a local Nevada mortuary.
Willis went to art school in Pasadena, Calif., worked at signage company YESCO and then later at neon custom-sign building company Western Neon. It was there that she designed the ‘Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas’ sign, which, in 1959, cost $4,000 to build and erect.