Obituaries from the 2023 Year Book

Gerald Bolding

Gerald Lynn Bolding, age 77, of Porter passed away on Wednesday, August 31,2022. He was born on November 7,1944 in Providence, White County, Arkansas. Gerald worked for Lubrizol Corporation of Deer Park for 28 years and then worked for Landmark Corporation from June of 2011 until July of 2022. He was married to Faye Bolding for 51 years, who preceded him in death. family and friends. He was a faithful member of Victory Missionary Baptist Church of New Caney, Texas. He had a great passion for the Lord and served as a deacon for many years. Later in life he answered the call to preach the gospel. He was ordained to pastoral ministry on January 21, 2006 and became the associate pastor of Twinlands Missionary Baptist Church of Houston, Texas. As a member of Victory MBC he preached as often as possible at several churches in the Southeast Texas area. The people of Victory looked forward to him filling the pulpit when needed. He is survived by his daughter, Sherry Bolding, son Kevin Bolding and wife Misty Bolding all of Porter, Texas. He is also survived by a granddaughter, Nikole Bolding and great grandsons Owen, Bryce, and Keaton Bolding. He was a wonderful man and is greatly missed by

Robert Brock

Robert Allen Brock, 82, of Henderson, went to be with the Lord on March 6, 2023. Robert was saved and baptized at age 14 at Silsbee First Baptist Church in Silsbee, TX. He received his Doctor of Theology at the Texas Baptist Institute and Seminary in Henderson, TX and his Master Degree in Education from Sam Houston University in Huntsville, TX. Robert went on to teach Horticulture to women prisoners in the Goree unit at Huntsville State Prison. He taught 8th grade earth science at Huntsville ISD, pastored Brooks Chapel Missionary Baptist Church in Beckville for 14 years, served as a Mount Zion Missionary, and pastored Tyler Road Baptist Church in Henderson since 1988. He was also a Texas Baptist and Seminary instructor for 45 years. He was a writer for Bogard Press Sunday School Devotionals and also a writer who published novels and devotional books, an artist (portraits and landscapes), builder and carpenter, and serviced proudly in the United States Air Force for 9 years. Robert was preceded in glory by his mother, Aileen Brock Weeks, stepfather Richard Barron Weeks, brothers; Richard and George Weeks and his sister, Patricia Fortenberry. Robert is survived by his wife of 62 years, Ella of Henderson. Sons; Dirk Brock and wife Shawna of Henderson, Jason Brock of Tyler and Wade Brock of Tyler. His grandchildren; Kevin Brock and wife Jill of Tipton, IN, Tyler Brock and wife Rachel of Richmond Hill, GA, Travis Brock of Longview, and Robert L. Brock and wife Hannah of Tyler. He is also survived by his great grandchildren; Tristian, Bonnie Ella, Leighton, Lauren, Elam, Carter, and Garrett, plus many loved nieces and nephews, as well as his brother, Ronald Weeks of Woodville, TX and sister-in-law Vickie Jane Weeks of Onalaska, TX

Mike Fodge

Mike Fodge, 75, of Shelbyville, Texas, passed away on October 18, 2023, in Nacogdoches, Texas. He was born on September 14, 1948, in Sikeston, Missouri, to the late Charles Edward and Faith Ann (McCambell) Fodge. A memorial service will be held at 3:00 pm on Tuesday, October 24, 2023, at Taylor Funeral Home in Timpson, Texas with Bro. Carroll Jones officiating. Mike was born and raised in Sikeston, Missouri. He met the love of his life, Kay Greene, and the two were married on December 16, 1967. They were married for 51 years at the time of her passing in 2019. Mike was a minister for 39 years. He pastored many churches, including Corinth Baptist, West Hamilton Baptist, and Fellowship Baptist. Mike absolutely adored his church family and was so grateful for their care for him. He enjoyed keeping his mind busy by doing puzzles, tinkering, and building models. Mike was super smart and knew so much trivia. He loved the pursuit of knowledge. He loved his family and found pleasure in spending time with them. Mike was devout in his faith and made sure his family knew the love of Jesus through his walk through life.

Jerry McCoskey

Jerry F. McCoskey, II passed away May 12, 2023 in Henderson, TX at his home. Jerry was born November 5, 1965 to Jerry and Bess McCoskey in Pine Bluff, AR. Jerry was a Maintenance Supervisor for Arkansas State Parks for sixteen years. Currently, he proudly pastored Bethel Missionary Baptist Church in Tatum, TX. Jerry is preceded in death by his mother, Bess McCoskey. He is survived by his wife; Jackie McCoskey of Henderson, TX and daughter, Madison McCoskey of Henderson, TX, daughter, Danielle McCoskey of Fort Smith, AR and his father; Jerry McCoskey of Ashdown, AR, one brother; Michael McCoskey of Ashdown, AR. Services will be held with Madden Funeral Home of Ashdown, AR. Visitation will be Thursday May 18, 2023 from 6-8pm at Madden Funeral Home Chapel in Ashdown, AR. Services will be held Friday May 19, 2023 at 2:00pm at Bethel Missionary Baptist Church in Ashdown, AR with burial to follow at Ashdown Memorial Gardens Cemetery.

John Melancon

As this is being written, I am sitting in the Hospice room at Memorial Hospital in Nacogdoches TX watching my husband John Melancon as he slowly dies. I know this is supposed to be an obituary, but I want it to be a Tribute to a man of exceeding courage, wisdom and above all, faith. John was born April 6, 1950 to Henry and Virginia Melancon. He was the youngest of four brothers, being preceded in death by Robert, who died in infancy. We, John and I have been married for 53 years. He felt the call to preach in his 20’s but I discouraged him, saying that God had called him to be a husband and father. Eventually I got my heart right, and he went on to serve The Lord the next 40 years as pastor, missionary, Biblical archaeologist and seminary teacher. John holds a Master’s Degree in English Bible, a Doctor of Ministry with an emphasis in Near Eastern Archaeology and a PhD-ABD in Archaeology. He has had such an impact on the people he has interacted with. Sitting in the room with me are a lady who drove here from Arkansas and a gentleman who drive from Mississippi just because of the love they have for him. Multitude have reached out from around the entire world. I’ve been trying to keep people updated as to what has happened since he first went to the ER, and it has snowballed. There are 10’s of thousands of people literally all over the world praying for him. The testaments they write of how God used John to change their lives is overwhelming. I did not anticipate his going downhill so fast, nor having to make the impossible decision to remove life support. Nor, sitting in this room writing his obituary. I had envisioned going back home and living at least 10 more years together. But, it is God’s will, not mine. May God be glorified and thank you for reading my tribute to my wonderful husband.

Obituaries from the 2022 Year Book

Bobby Bryant

Bobby Bryant, Sr. was born on March 26th, 1946 to Conway and Geneva Bryant in Warren, Arkansas. At the age of 15, Bobby asked Jesus into his heart and secured his place in Heaven. As he left this earthly home, he was surrounded by his loving family and was greeted joyfully in Heaven by his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ on June 23rd, 2022. One of Bobbys many accomplishments included being a skilled carpenter. He would build anything his loving wife requested. But his most important work on this Earth was his service for the Lord. He surrendered to the ministry at the age of 20 and spent a lifetime caring for the spiritual needs of his congregation and mentoring many young men. His ministry began in 1966 at Bacliff Missionary Baptist Church in Bacliff, Texas. He was then called as Missionary Pastor to Freeway Missionary Baptist Church in La Marque, Texas (1966 -1983). From 1983 – 2012, he served as pastor of Faith Missionary Baptist Church in Houston, Texas until his retirement. At each of these churches, he was devoted to the membership and made many life-long friends. His number one heart’s desire was to win as many souls for Christ as he could. Summers were always about taking kids to summer church camp at Pine Springs and Bogg Springs. He always made sure every kid was able to attend and never left anyone behind. Church functions were a highlight, and he believed in having fellowships at least once a month. Whether it was eating, VBS, Fall Festivals, or playing volleyball in the field, you could always count on him to be right in the middle of it. More than anything, Bobby loved his family. From his children to great grandchildren, they were his focus in everything he did. Family was his joy, from New Braunfels vacations and sporting events, to birthday celebrations and holidays (especially Christmas). Bobby was an avid supporter of his Houston Astros and Dallas Cowboys. He also loved hunting and fishing outings with his best friend, Bro. Darrell Streeter. The outdoors was where he always preferred to be.

Fane Derryberry

Fane Eugene Derryberry, 95, of Silsbee, passed away on December 26, 2021, in Beaumont. Funeral services will be 10:00 a.m., Wednesday, December 29, 2021, at Claybar Kelley Watkins Funeral Home in Beaumont. Officiating will be Reverend Leroy Smith and Reverend Henry Sims. Burial will follow at Forest Lawn Memorial Park. Born in Whitesboro, Texas, on October 29, 1926, he was the son of Alvis Derryberry and Nettie Barnes. Fane served as a minister for various churches over 65 years, but most significantly Suburban Acres Baptist Church in Beaumont for a total of 50 years. He drove the bus for Beaumont Independent School District for 28 years and often volunteered at the VA in Beaumont. He was the lead director of Pine Springs Youth Incampment in Pineville for several years and played a vital role in the organizations daily affairs. Fane was a servant of God and poured his life into helping and enriching others. He often took time out of his busy schedule to visit with the sick and so many others. Fane left a lasting empact on so many in the Southeast Texas community and will be missed in the hearts of all who loved him.

Carl E Fitzgerald

Carl Edwin Fitzgerald went home to Jesus on January 12, 2022. He was born to Louise and Bernice Fitzgerald on December 20, 1945 in Houston, Texas. Carl is meeting in Heaven his father Bernice Fitzgerald, his son Jason Fitzgerald, and step father Wayne Branson, along with many aunts and uncles. Carl is survived by his wife Maureen Fitzgerald, his mother Louise Fitzgerald Branson of Houston. Jeffery Fitzgerald and wife Sonia Fitzgerald and grandson Mason Grammer all of Liberty, Texas. Jeremy Fitzgerald and wife Michelle Fitzgerald and granddaughters Kali Fitzgerald, Carly Fitzgerald, Sadae Munize, and Shya Deleon all of Texas City. Carl had one great granddaughter Mackenzie Wilton. Carl had one sister Betty Weiss and her husband David Weiss of Houston. Carl surrendered to the ministry in 1976 and was ordained in 1982. He pastored five churches over the past 40 years: Mammoth MBC, Mammoth Arizona,1982-1987, Friendship MBC in the Jumbo Community outside Henderson, Texas 1988-1991, Nedville MBC in Jasper Texas 1991-1996, Landmark MBC, Texas City Texas 1996-2008, and Grace MBC in Conroe, Texas 2010-2022. In 2005, Carl started teaching at Heritage Baptist Institute as a fill-in. Carl became President of HBI from 2008 to 2022. Carl received his Masters of Theology in May of 1991, and his Doctor of Theology in May of 2006 from Texas Baptist Institute in Henderson, Texas. Carl spent 22 years in the Air Force, 1965-1987 and retired as a Master Sargent.

Rickey Hatter

Rickey Hatter passed from this life into heaven on December 19, 2022 in Levelland, Texas. He was born near Duke, Oklahoma on October 24, 1934 to S.V. and Pearl Hatter. He graduated from Altus High School in 1953, and served in the United States Marine Corps from 1955-1959. Rickey married Bessie Ann Holman on April 20, 1962 in Vernon, Texas. He attended seminary in Marlow, Oklahoma, graduating in 1973. He pastored churches in Texas and Kansas. He filled in at many other churches when called upon. He drove a school bus in Wheeler, Texas, for 1 year. The family moved to Levelland in 1976, where he would work for Levelland ISD for 24 years doing various duties. During his retirement, he volunteered for Meals on Wheels, and continued to preach at area churches when called upon. Rickey was preceded in death by his parents; a stillborn brother; sister, Audra Thornhill; and an infant great granddaughter. Survivors include his wife of 60+ years, Bessie; daughter, Becky (Zane) Davis; son, David Hatter, all of Levelland; 3 grandchildren, Dana (Shawn) Bradley, Elayne Davis and Trevor (Jacey) Davis, all of Levelland; and 8 great grandchildren, Keaton, Dalanie, Summer, Korbin, Jaxson, Stella, Aubree, and Arlie. Rickey is also survived by many friends, because he never met a stranger. His life was a life well-lived. A memorial service will be held at the Krestridge Funeral Home Chapel at 2pm on Friday, January 20, 2022.

Larry Jacobs

Dr. Larry Paul Jacobs, 85, of Angleton, Texas passed away peacefully into the arms of his Jesus on Thursday afternoon, September 15, 2022 in Clearlake, Texas. Larry was the son of Paul and Irene (Williams) Jacobs born on January 7, 1937 in Trimble, Tennessee. Brother Larrys journey of life began in Trimble, Tennessee. He joined the Navy at 17 years of age. He married the love of his life and soulmate, Jen, and enjoyed over 60 years together. He surrendered to God’s call to the ministry and graduated from California Missionary Baptist Seminary in Bellflower, California in 1969. In 1970 he moved Jen and the six children to Auburn, Washington, to pastor the Auburn Missionary Baptist Church for 9 years. In 1979 he went to teach Greek at Gulf Coast Baptist Seminary in Theodore, Alabama. During this time he wrote his Masters and Doctorate thesis and graduated with his Doctor of Theology in 1981. During this time he pastored the Edgewood Missionary Baptist Church in Bogalusa, Louisanna. He then was called to Spanish Trail Missionary Baptist Church in Pensacola, Florida for 12 years and then to Central Baptist in Bedford, TX. For 14 years. At this point the Lord gave him a desire to help struggling churches. Larry, with Jen by his side, began started Star Fish Ministry for 5 years, which ended with them coming to New Heights Baptist Fellowship, 2013 and they called him as Pastor. Bro. Larry never met a stranger. He loved people and was a one-of-a-kind preacher. He could deliver Gods word in a simple to understand way. His humorous personality and sharing of stories always kept his congregation awake. Bro. Larry lived life to the fullest. He became a certified scuba diver around the age of 65 and dived at several locations to include the Caribbean, Hawaii and Washington to depths of over a 100 feet, for his 70th birthday he climbed a rock wall on a cruise ship, and at 84, he was able to check sky diving off his bucket list. Larry & Jen loved to travel and traveled to several countries and 49 of the states. Among other accomplishments he authored a book titled Chosen and even wrote and composed a song, named In His Arms Tomorrow, with Jens help.

Donald Melton

Donald Melton, 81, of Center, Tx passed away on December 23, 2021. He was born on April 7, 1940, in Basile, Louisiana, to the late Luster and Tommie (Huff) Melton. Donald grew up in Needville and Galena Park while his dad was working for United Gas. They moved to Henderson after his dad surrendered to the ministry and enrolled in TBI. He met Louise it is believed at Lone Cedar as a child when her dad, Doyle Harrison, was a pastor there, but they officially met in Midland when they were introduced by his seminary classmate, Amiel Smith who was dating and would later marry Louise’s sister, Sarah. He married the love of his life, Mary Louise Harrison Melton, on May 18, 1960, and they were married 50 years before her passing. Donald worked at Brookeshire Bros. at Carthage, San Augustine, Newton, and Timpson two different times 35 years apart, he later retired from there. The Lord delayed his transfer with Brookeshire Bros. from San Augustine to Newton just long enough for him to have the privilege to lead an atheist to the Lord. Donald had been witnessing to him but that morning the atheist wanted to drive out in front of a truck and take his life because his wife was taking all he had. He realized that he wasn’t ready to die and came to Donald to find out why he was always so happy. He told him and the man left and came back to tell Donald he knew then why he was always so happy. He also worked for a time at Pace Pharmacy in Newton and H&S Grocery in Center. Donald had a love for football, basketball, and baseball and was a devoted fan of the Cardinals, Rockets, Oilers, and LSU. He was a pitcher and was going to try out for the Houston Buffaloes, an affiliate of the Cardinals but surrendered to the ministry instead. He was a lover of music also with his favorite artists including Jim Reeves, Ricky Van Shelton, Billy Joe Royal, Fats Domino and Buddy Holly. He enjoyed family time and playing dominoes, especially 42 as this is a family tradition. Donald graduated from Texas Baptist Institute in Henderson in 1962 with a Master of English Bible Degree. He spent many years preaching the Word of God. He was an ABA Missionary Baptist preacher. His pastorates include New Prospect, Deadwood in 1961, New Shady Grove, Deadwood from 1962-1963, Hubbard Missionary Baptist from 1964-1965, Linden Missionary Baptist from 1965-1966, Monticello, Mt. Pleasant from 1967-1968, Bethel, New Waverly from 1968-1969, Trout Creek, Kirbyville from 1970-1975, Emmanuel, Greenville from 1975-1976, Enterprise, Gary from 1977-1978, Brown Chapel, San Augustine from 1979-1982, Union, Newton from 1982-1986, Hawthorne, San Augustine from 1986-1989, Old Salem, Center from 1990-1996, Line Creek, Ida, La. From 1996-1997, Landmark, Lufkin from 1998-2001, and New Columbia, Timpson from 2002-2006. He was a longtime supporter of the Louisiana Missionary Baptist Institute and Seminary.

Ronnie Pipes

Ronnie Kent Pipes of Redwater, TX was born June 6, 1945 went to his heavenly home surrounded by his wife and children on February 4, 2021. He faithfully served in the ministry of Jesus Christ for 44 years. He was the pastor at Oak Ridge Missionary Baptist Church in Maud, TX. During his 44 tenure, he pastored 7 churches across Texas and Arkansas. One his greatest pleasures in life was going to Israel and preaching on the Mount of Olives. He was a proud serviceman to the United States Army Reserves.

Marion Reed

Marion Buster Reed was born to B.R. and Annie Reed on September 20, 1930, in Love County, Oklahoma.  With younger brother Bill added to the family, they moved to Clovis, New Mexico in 1942 to provide a better and dryer climate for his mother who had suffered with significant breathing difficulties in the Red River valley area of Oklahoma.  He attended the public schools there and graduated from high school in 1949.  In the years during and after high school, he worked jobs in a machine shop, delivering milk, surveying for a rural electric company, and project management for a steel fabrication company.   Marion met Nancy Lee Smith when she came to Clovis to play the piano for revival meetings at the local Baptist church.  They were soon married in 1950 and began raising their family.  Between 1952 and 1957, Marion became the father of four sons.  Marion felt the call of God and surrendered to the ministry in 1959.  Soon after, he realized his need for additional education and training for the ministry.  He moved the family of six to Henderson in deep east Texas in the late summer of 1961.  There he started his training at the Texas Baptist Institute (TBI).  While continuing at the institute, he took assignments for fill-in preaching in the east Texas area and worked & supervised construction projects for a local company.  He graduated from TBI in 1965 with a Master of Theology degree. In 1963 while still in school, Marion met with a group of people in Edgewood, Texas who were eager to start a new Baptist church there.  Being led by the Lord to that opportunity, he committed himself and his family to that effort and that was the beginning of his pastoral life.  Having finished his school training, he felt the call in 1967 to move to the Dallas area to start a new church in Garland.  The family moved to Richardson to work with the Waterview Baptist Church there as the fostering church for the Garland mission.  The Golden Meadows Baptist Church began meeting at its current site in 1970.  Marion remained the pastor there until his retirement in 1996.  But, retiring from pastoring did not mean retiring from God’s work.  Having owned and operated a church design and construction management firm for several years during his pastoral tenure, Marion began to consult with other pastors and churches about planning for their building needs.  In 1996 he began his Church Building Ministry services and was supported by local churches who realized his knowledge and expertise would be a beneficial mission for new churches and others who could not afford the traditional architectural and general contractor approach to church construction.  He continuously served churches across the nation in this way until 2021.  The list of churches he served is significant!  During this same period, Marion consulted with and helped design a new Baptist youth camp in east Texas and the expansion and upgrade of a camp in southwestern Arkansas.  Because of those efforts, he served as a Trustee for the American Baptist Association Youth Encampment organization for many years.  He was also instrumental in assisting in the organization of a Spanish speaking seminary in McAllen, Texas where he designed and coordinated the construction of the initial buildings for the Mexican Baptist Institute.  Other ministry opportunities included the planting of a church mission in Merida, Yucatan, Mexico, serving as Secretary-Treasurer for the Association of Missionary Baptist Churches of Texas, and Secretary-Treasurer for the Central Texas Missions Council.  Through all the years prior to his passing on to his Heavenly home with his loving God on March 19, 2022, Marion was lovingly devoted to his wonderfully supportive wife, Nancy, and his now large family of sons, daughters-in-law, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.  They all love him greatly and know that he will be missed by each one!

Gene Smith

Dr. Gene Cullis Smith, born on December 8, 1930, entered eternal rest on January 6, 2022. He is survived by his wife of 66 years, Margie Gaston Smith, daughter, Regina Smith Green (Tom), son, Reggie Smith (Carla). Surviving grandchildren are Jonathan Green, Benjamin Green, Katelyn Green Myers (Brad), Matthew Smith (Sybil). Gene was preceded in death by his parents, George & Essie Smith and an older brother, George Jr. Smith. Surviving brothers are Del Morris Smith (Clara) of Longview TX and Wilson Smith (Pat) of Austin TX. Dr. Smith was an Army veteran of the Korean conflict and a Baptist minister who served churches in Texas and Arkansas. He graduated with his Doctorate of Theology from Texas Baptist Institute in Henderson, TX. Churches he served during his career: Mt. Bethel Baptist in Gary, TX, Cavanaugh Baptist in Ft. Smith AR, Central Baptist in Fayetteville AR, Fellowship Baptist in Pasadena TX, and Olive Street Baptist in Pine Bluff AR. During his years of pastoring, he wrote Adult Bible lessons, devotional books, and other materials for the ABA Association. Upon his retirement from full time pastorate, he moved to Texarkana, TX to continue his writing for Bogard Press publications. Dr. Smith served the American Missionary Baptist Association as clerk of the national meetings for many years and was recognized for his service. He also served on many denominational boards & committees.

Robert Smith

Robert Larry Smith, 73, of Gilmer, passed away on Saturday, February 19, 2022, in Tyler, Texas. He was born June 4, 1948, in Gilmer, Texas, to Lawrence Ray and Annie Fay Burnett Smith, the first of four sons. The family moved to Diana, then to the Stamps community. Larry attended school in Diana, and graduated May 27, 1966. In the summer of 1966, he went to work for Letourneau, and remained there for 49 years. Larry was drafted into the Army on April 4, 1968, for two years. He spent most of his time in Germany during the Vietnam War as a Rocket Specialist. On May 24, 1985, he received an Associate Degree as a bible specialist and then got his Bachelor of Theology on May 26, 1987, both from the Texas Baptist Institute and Seminary in Henderson, Texas. As an ordained minister, he pastored County Line #2 Missionary Baptist Church in Pittsburg for 16 years.

John Sweeten

John Bernard Sweeten, 66, of Cleveland, Texas was called to his Heavenly home on Wednesday, February 2, 2022. He was born on Wednesday, November 23, 1955, in Cleveland, Texas to Emmett Sweeten and Nora (Carr) Sweeten, both of whom have preceded him in death. John was also preceded in death by his sister, Judy Shaw, and grandson, Cole Sweeten. Left to cherish his memory is his loving wife of 20 years, Ericka Sweeten; children, John Sweeten, III, Erick Sweeten, BJ Sweeten, Daniel Sweeten; brothers, Jerry Sweeten, Levearl Sweeten; sister, Karen Whatley; grandchildren, Natalie, J.C., and A.J.; along with numerous other loving family and treasured friends. Bro. John was the pastor of Grace MBC in Cleveland, Texas.

Steve Vaughn

Mr. Vaughn passed away Monday, July 18, 2022. He was born to Knox and Emily Vaughn on October 18, 1934, in Laurel, Mississippi. Frank moved to Texas with his family and graduated from Irving High School in 1952. He attended TCU until he joined the Army and served two years during the Korean Conflict after which he worked in the family business Vaughns Furniture and Appliance Store in Dallas. He met Bonnie McNeill in 1956 and in February of 1957 and they married in his parents home in Irving. They lived in Irving where their two children, Pamela and Steve, were born until 1963 when he answered the call to preach in 1963 and moved to attend seminary at Texas Baptist Institute in Henderson Texas, graduating in 1967. He served as pastor to Farmers Academy in Mt. Pleasant while attending Seminary. He served as pastor of First Baptist Church, Lone Star, going on to Ruston, Louisiana to serve Cypress Springs MBC and while there graduated from Louisiana Tech University. He moved his family to Henderson in 1972 to become an instructor and treasurer for TBI where he served until 2003, during that time he was also pastor of New Shady Grove MBC in Carthage until he retired after 25 years. He taught Sunday School at Calvary Baptist Church for several years until his health required him to retire. He was an avid student all his life and loved to learn and share his learning with students of the Ministry. He and Bonnie traveled and enjoyed their retirement.

Hunter Wilkes

Funeral services for Hunter and Lexi Wilkes will be held Thursday, December 23, 2021, at 11 a.m. at First Baptist Church in Minden, La., with Bro. Micah Carter officiating. Interment will follow at Forest Grove Missionary Baptist Church Cemetery in Taylor, Ark. The families will receive friends from 5-8 p.m., Wednesday, December 22, 2021, at First Baptist Church. Hunter was born August 7, 2000, in Palestine, Texas and Lexi was born August 10, 2000, in Texarkana, Texas. On December 19, 2021, in Carthage, Texas, they entered their eternal life in heaven, as they did everything else…together. Hunter was the youth/ associate pastor at Eastside Missionary Baptist Church in Gary, Texas. He was a student at Louisiana Missionary Baptist Institute and Seminary, and a plumbers apprentice for Cardwell Plumbing. Hunter adored everything about baseball. Growing up, his passion for the game was evident his whole life. As he grew, his passions shifted when God called him to preach. Hunter turned down a baseball scholarship to go to seminary to help prepare him for his greatest passion, preaching the gospel. Lexi was a graduate of Southern Arkansas University with a major in Finance. She worked for her daddy at Magnolia Advisory Group in Magnolia, Ark., where she quickly became his right hand. Lexi loved basketball and softball and was very competitive. She was an influencer and loved cooking and sharing her recipes. Most of all she loved the Lord and being a wife and mother to Hunter and Jett.

Obituaries from the 2021 Year Book

Donald Britton

Donald Britton passed away Saturday, August 7, 2021 in Tyler. He was born July 16, 1935 in Maydelle to Jessie Lee and Flossie Harris Britton. Donald was a member of University Baptist Church in Tyler. He graduated from Maydelle High School and Texas Baptist Institute and Seminary in Henderson. He was an instructor at TBI for 44 years and pastor of UBC for 46 years.

Richard Crawford

Richard Wayne Crawford was born November 25, 1946 to George and Pauline Crawford in Clinton, OK. The youngest son and next to youngest child of thirteen brothers and sisters, Richard was a proud member of the expansive Crawford clan all of his life. At age sixteen he met a little red-haired girl named Jeanne Rose. They were married December 7, 1964 and spent their lives, living, loving and working together. Richard was licensed to preach on February 4, 1970. He began to faithfully serve the Lord’s churches and his fellow man as a dedicated minister of the gospel from that time forward to the end of his life. Richard was a mighty man of God. He was always studying and contemplating the scriptures. His powerful faith and love for God and the souls of people was always evident. When Jesus called his faithful servant home the world lost a true warrior of the faith. Richard was preceded in death by his parents, George and Pauline Crawford; brothers, George, Clifford, Bill, Leonard, Bob, and Jim; sisters, Mae, Joan, Ernie, and a great-granddaughter Kathryn Marie Crawford and many other dear loved ones. He was also preceded in death by his beloved wife who he missed desperately every moment of every day. He is survived by his children Rodney Crawford and wife Sherri of Gladewater, TX, Melissa Cooper and husband Aaron of Springfield, IL; grandsons, Nick Cooper of Albuquerque, NM, John Crawford and wife Dawn of Gladewater, and Ben Cooper of Fairbanks, Alaska; granddaughter, Sara Dandridge and husband Joe of Tyler, TX. Three great-grandchildren Jade, Micheal, and Noah Crawford; brother Larry Crawford of CA, sisters Hattie Black and Shirley Henderson of OK. He also leaves to mourn his passing sisters-in-law, brothers-in-law, a host of cousins, nieces, nephews, friends from around the world, and his church family.

Eugene Dawson

Eugene Floyd Dawson left his earthly body on December 9, 2020 to be with his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Floyd was born September 14, 1932 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma to Finis R. Dawson and Beulah Brown Dawson. On June 28, 1952 he married the love of his life, Ina Mae Prince. They were members of Salem Missionary Baptist Church in Lawton, Oklahoma where he surrendered to the ministry. They moved to Marlow, Oklahoma so he could attend Oklahoma Missionary Baptist Institute where he received a Bachelor of Theology in Bible in 1972. While attending school, he pastored his first church in Fort Cobb, Oklahoma and then accepted the call to serve as Missionary to Australia. After returning to the states, he pastored churches in California, Oklahoma, Oregon and Texas. While pastoring, Floyd worked as a janitor in many schools as a second job, but he enjoyed it. He used every opportunity he had to witness to the students and fill in for teachers where he would share stories of being a missionary in Australia. Floyd loved his family and always wanted the family to be together. He enjoyed playing cards with the grandkids and taking them to parks to play and taking the kids out to breakfast and antique shopping. He always liked to bake cakes and cookies with the grandkids, and they all enjoyed the fruits of their labor. He loved his cookies and chocolates. Floyd enjoyed watching Western shows and movies. He especially enjoyed road trips with Ina. One thing you could count on with Floyd was his desire to share Christ with everyone he met. Floyd is preceded in death by his mother, father, and sister, Lina Bell. He is survived by his wife of 68 years, Ina, his sisters, Erma Dean Coleman, Patsy Bowen and husband Don, Earline Branum and husband Bill, Linda Rushing and husband Jack, son, David Dawson and wife Darlene; son, Doug Dawson; daughter, Denise Davis and husband Greg; daughter, Dawna Herring and husband Mike; grandchildren, David Dawson and wife Waynette, Diana Dawson, Daniel Dawson and wife Brandy, Darrell Dawson and wife Nova, Shannon Thurston and husband Mark, Seth Davis, Amy and Emily Herring and great-grandchildren, Deanna, Dayna, Demi, Deven, Dean, Dwight, Daylee, Hannah, Daniel, Benjamin, Rebecca, Elizabeth and Matthew. He also leaves behind numerous nieces, nephews, and brothers-in-law.

Roger Elumbaugh

Bro. Roger Bois Elumbaugh, 79, of Center, passed away August 16, 2021, in Nacogdoches. Visitation will be held from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Wednesday, August 18, 2021, at Watson & Sons Funeral Home in Center. Funeral service will be held at 2:00 p.m., Thursday, August 19, 2021, at Watson & Sons Chapel with Bro. Calvin Gould officiating. Interment will follow at Mt. Herman Cemetery in Center. Born May 13, 1942, in Hickory Ridge, Arkansas, Roger is the son of Arthur Elumbaugh and Bertha McClung Elumbaugh. He was a preacher for 53 years and spent 22 of those years as Pastor of Mt. Herman Missionary Baptist Church in Center. His hobbies included fishing, playing the guitar, and loving his grandkids, most of all spreading God’s word.

James Golden

Reverend James Jim Hughie Golden Jr. was born in Lakeland, Florida, August 19, 1945. After fighting the good fight, finishing the race, and keeping the faith Jim went home to be with his Lord and Savior August 17, 2021 in Trinity, Texas at the age of 75. Jim was a graduate of Sam Houston High School of Houston. He proudly served in the United States Air Force. He worked in various industries before surrendering to the ministry in 1978 at the age of 33. After earning a bachelors degree in Theology from the Texas Baptist Institute, he began a mission work in Trinity, Texas at Trinity Missionary Baptist Church. He served as pastor at Trinity Missionary Baptist Church 1985 1996, Waterview Baptist Church 1994 1996, Freeway Baptist Church 1996 1998, and eventually returned to Trinity Missionary Baptist Church in 1998, where he served as pastor until the time of his passing.

Charles (Chuck) Hinson

On Thursday, February 18, 2021, Charles “Chuck” Hinson, loving husband, father, and grandfather, went to be with his Lord and Savior at the age of 72. Chuck was born on March 13, 1948, in Mount Pleasant, Texas, to Jesse Thomas and Leita Mae Hinson. He served in the United States Air Force during the Vietnam War for 4 years. Following his service, Chuck worked as a teacher, welder, truck driver, and preacher. He became a member of Damascus Missionary Baptist Church on October 26, 1989, where he served as deacon, Sunday school teacher, and preacher. At the time of his passing, he was serving as the preacher of Damascus Missionary Baptist Church, a role he filled for 16 years. On October 14, 1987, Chuck married Janie Mays. They lived, loved, and enjoyed life together for 33 years. Chuck had one son, Shawn, and four daughters, Daphne, Sue, Karen, and Angie. Chuck was a grandfather and great grandfather, better known as Pappy, to his seven grandchildren and eight great grandchildren. Chuck and Janie loved spending time together eating out, traveling, and being at home with their dog, Ruger. Chuck loved his dog, and made special trips to Chicken Express for chicken and sweet tea just for Ruger. Chuck also loved his birds, and you could often find him sitting in his chair, Ruger on his lap, as he listened to his birds sing. He was known for his quick wit, dancing skills (especially the “Pappy” dance meant to embarrass and/or entertain his grandchildren), and nicknaming ability (something he greatly enjoyed creating for each grandchild and great grandchild). Chuck was also known for his love of debating the Bible with anyone who would engage in conversation with him as he had a strong desire for others to know Jesus like he knew Jesus.

Daniel Malone

Daniel Luby Malone Sr. of Waco, Texas, was born on August 15, 1939 in Yazoo City Mississippi to I.D. Malone Jr. and Verlie Mae (Luby) Malone. He went to his heavenly home on April 17, 2021, at the age of 81. Texas Funeral Service will be 2:00 pm, Friday, April 23rd at Landmark Baptist Church with Bro. Michael Raines officiating. A Viewing will begin at 1:00 pm. Mississippi Funeral Service will be 3:00 pm, Sunday, April 25th at Midway Baptist Church in Benton with Bro. Daniel L. Malone, Jr. officiating. Viewing will begin at 2:30 pm. Interment will follow at Midway Baptist Church Cemetery. Dan grew up in Benton, Mississippi and attended Benton High School. He was saved and baptized at Midway Baptist Church. He served in the United States Army. He married Dorothy Ann Davis on June 29, 1958, and the Lord blessed them with four children. He accepted the call to the ministry and graduated from Louisiana Baptist Institute and Seminary. His hobbies were quail hunting with his bird dogs, crappie fishing, restoring classic antique cars, and his love for all of his grandchildren and great grandbabies. He was a retired pastor serving as Pastor Emeritus of Landmark Baptist Church in Waco, Texas. He was preceded in death by his father I. D. Malone Jr, his mother, Verlie Mae (Luby) Malone, his brother, Jerry Alvin Malone, his brother-in-law, William Henry Jones, his son, Joel Davis Malone, and his grandson, Joshua Darrell Malone. He is survived by his loving wife, Dorothy, sons, Daniel Luby Malone Jr. and wife Sherry of Strong, Arkansas, William Darrell Malone and wife Kim of Eros, Louisiana, daughter, Dana Lynn Pearson and husband Mike of Waco, Texas, and daughter in law, Sharla Malone of McKinney. He is also survived by his sister Jo Ann Jones of Benton, Mississippi, his sister Sandy Roan and husband Wayne of Madision, Mississippi, Granddaughters, Brandy Stewart and husband Bo of Camden, Arkansas, Michelle and husband Chuck Jones of Hamburg, Arkansas, Misty McDade and husband Jim of West Monroe, Louisiana, Kade Malone of Eros, Louisiana, Briton Malone and fiance’ Mason Glover of Plano, Marin Malone of McKinney, Ashley Allen of Riesel, Texas, Haley Brooke Grmela and husband Eddie Grmela of Waco, Texas, Michaela and fiancé’ Carson Kaddatz of West. Great grandchildren: Mckinley Stewart, Raylee Stewart, Kaylee Stewart, Kaci Jones, Karly Jones, Karoline Jones, Kyson McDade, Kyndahl McDade, Ashton McDade, Addyson McDade, Joshua Aaron Malone, Aubrey Allen, Autumn Allen, Easton Summey, Avery Summey, Jase Grmela, Tanner Grmela, and many nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends.

Hiram Melton

Rev. Hiram Thomas Melton, born October 24, 1937, left his earthly home October 19, 2021, in Tenaha, Texas surrounded by his loving wife and family. After being diagnosed with cancer 14 years ago, he fought and won many battles against the disease and only recently no longer had the strength to fight it anymore. Visitation will be held from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., Friday, October 22, 2021, at Watson & Sons Funeral Home in Center with service at 2:00 p.m., Saturday. Bro. Neal Clark and Bro. Jay Pollan will officiate. Interment will be held at Ramah Cemetery in Tenaha. Bro. Hiram was born at his grandparents’ house on the hill up from Lone Cedar Missionary Baptist Church to Luster Melton and Tommie Huff Melton. He first attended Lone Cedar Church as a child and it was here, Bro. Hiram remembers hearing the gospel for the first time. During World War II, he moved to Houston where his father worked in the shipyards. While in Houston he attended Galena Park Missionary Baptist Church. At the age of 14, he found himself under conviction and accepted Jesus as his savior and was baptized. It was only a year later when a young Hiram would answer God’s call and surrender to preach. The 1950s would prove to be a busy time in Bro. Hiram’s life. In 1955, he began his studies at the Texas Baptist Institute. While in seminary, he married the love of his life, Beth King. He proved himself to be a devoted, loving husband to her throughout their 63 years and 9 months of marriage. With Beth at his side, he would go on to receive his Master of Theology Degree from TBI in 1959. Also, in September of 1959 they welcomed the birth of their first child, Brenda into the world and in August of 1962, their son Randy was born. In the years that followed his graduation from TBI he found himself serving the Lord, both in church and in the community. He pastored several churches in East Texas and served as a State Missionary for 5 years. His services were not just limited to his local church, He also had the privilege of serving as moderator of the State Association for 2 years, moderator for Shelby County for 2 years, and clerk for Salem Association for 17 years. He has hosted and attended numerous activities such as church camps, revivals, Vacation Bible Schools, mission rallies, State and National meetings and many more events in service to the Lord. While he lived in League City, he drove an ambulance and worked for a funeral home which he considered to be part of his ministry helping those who were suffering. While at Hughes Springs he worked for the Postal Service where he met many people and talked to them about the Lord. He retired from the Postal Service in 1999. During his 69 years in the ministry, Bro. Hiram was fortunate to pastor a lot of good, caring churches over the years and made a lot of friends throughout the state of Texas. His longest tenure as Pastor was at Antioch Missionary Baptist Church in Hughes Springs where he devoted 27 years to the members there. Bro. Hiram and Beth retired and came back home where he finished his service to the Lord at Lone Cedar Missionary Baptist Church in Joaquin, Texas where he has served as pastor for 11 ½ years. He always thought it was a blessing from the Lord to end up at such a wonderful and caring church in the community where his life began. Bro. Hiram and Beth have been blessed with two children, six grandchildren and five great grandchildren. Bro. Hiram has had the privilege of serving as minister in the weddings of his children and grandchildren. He has also left lasting impressions on the lives of his great grandchildren, whether it be walking in the yard with his dog, reading books or having nerf wars in the den.

Randy Penney

Reverend David Randolph Penney “Randy”, 86 of Tyler, Texas answered the call to join his Heavenly Father on January 11, 2021. Randy was a beloved husband, father, and grandfather who devoted his life to the services of the Lord, retiring from the Baptist ministry after 52 years of preaching across East Texas. Most recently at Zion Hill Missionary Baptist Church in Minden, TX. Randy was born on May 27, 1934 in Mt. Enterprise to Henry and Claudia Penney. He served his country honorably in the United States Army in Korea, prior to joining the ministry in 1957. Randy is survived by his, daughter, Pam Helgeson and husband, John and son, Perry Penney; his grandchildren, Megan Hughet and husband, John and their son, Sam; Lori Beth Fountain and her husband, David; as well as many nieces, nephews and all of Betty’s family. He was preceded in death by his wife, Betty Penney, his parents, his sisters, Sue Barrett Penny and Margaret Ann Richie Penney, brother, Billy Penney and daughter-in-law, Rebecca Ann Barnett Penney. Dad never met a stranger and lived to serve others and be a Christian example. He was faithful in going to church and ministering the word of Christ and studying his word. For many years he visited nursing homes and hospitals, preaching to those who could not attend church. IN his own words “I may be in Heaven tomorrow, so I’ll gladly serve Jesus today.” Even in retirement he would mail his hand typed sermons with notes to those he loved. He was kind to animals and enjoyed walking his dog. He always offered to help when needed, never asking for anything in return. He enjoyed going to fresh produce stands and sharing his produce treasure with others. We know he is happy in Heaven with Betty and so many loved ones gone before which gives us peace. He is greatly missed and will always be dearly loved. A memorial service honoring Randy’s life and legacy will be held at a later date for the safety of those Randy held dear. The family asks in lieu of flowers, any donations be sent to Texas Baptist Institute in Henderson, Texas which always held a special place in Randy’s heart. “I am the resurrection and the Life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die and whoever lives by believing in me will never die” John 11:25-26

Dale Reed

Dr. Franklin Dale Reed was born August 3, 1950 in Carthage, Texas. He passed this life January 4, 2021 in Tyler, Texas. He was the only son of four children born to Rev. Ottie Franklin and Myrtle Cosette Burns Reed. He was schooled and raised in Clayton through the seventh grade, and graduated from Carthage High School with the Bulldog class of 1968. Dale answered the call to preach entering Texas Baptist Institute Seminary in Henderson, Texas where he graduated in 1971 with a Bachelors of English Bible, and in 1972, with a Masters of English Bible. Dale was licensed by Mt. Pleasant M.B.C. Logan, Texas in June of 1968 and ordained at Enterprise M.B.C. in McCoy, Texas in 1968. Dale received his Doctors of English Bible from Heritage Baptist Institute Seminary in Missouri City, Texas in 2010. After completing three degrees in English bible he received a Doctors of Divinity from T.B.I. Dale served 50 years as a law enforcement Chaplain at Kilgore, Corsicana and then home to Carthage to serve P.C.S.D. and C.P.D. and also in the Carthage F. D. Dale served as a reserve deputy under Constable Bryan Murff. Dale holds a level of master with the I.C.P.C., he taught on local, state, and national levels concerning small department Chaplain Programs. He helped organize the East Texas Law Enforcement Chaplains Assoc., and was the first president. Dale created our local Peace Officers Memorial held for the last 32 years. With the help of Sheriff Jack Ellett, they raised monuments in honor of our local officers lost in the line of duty. He serves as past president of the Carthage Rotary as well as member of the Carthage Lions Club and school board member for the Panola School District. Dale is a member of the Carthage Masonic Lodge #521 A.F. & A.M. and member of the Sharon Shrine Temple of Tyler. Dale felt his greatest accomplishment was pastoring the Carthage Missionary Baptist Church for 20 years. A church he loved dearly and gave the best years of his life as pastor. Dale married Joni Willis on November 7, 1997 making his last 23 years even sweeter.

Mark Simmons

Mark Warren Simmons of Johntown, Texas took his final breath on earth and was welcomed into the loving arms of his Lord and Savior Friday night, September 17, 2021, from injuries sustained from a car accident. Mark was born on August 2, 1973, in Sherman, Texas, the first of two sons born to James Melvin and Marilyn Camille (Bishop) Simmons. Mark was currently serving as the Pastor of Johntown Missionary Baptist Church in Johntown, Texas. Before coming to Johntown, he served his Lord and Savior as a Worship Pastor and as a Youth Pastor. His earlier pastorates include Ridgeway Baptist Church in Nashville, Arkansas; Christ Point in Arkadelphia, Arkansas; Lake Ouachita, in Mount Ida, Arkansas; Highland Heights in Benton, Arkansas; and Cross Roads Missionary Baptist, also in Benton, Arkansas. He was a former instructor at the Clark County Christian Academy in Arkadelphia, Arkansas. Mark was passionate about loving people the way Jesus loved them. He had a heart for missions, evangelism, and discipleship and overflowed with the joy of the Lord. He was a lover of people and of the community in which he lived. Mark served as chair of the local food pantry. He loved the students of the Rivercrest schools and was like a father to many of them, often referring to the students as “his kids.” He loved to fish, and enjoyed writing and making music with his brother, Jim, and anyone else he could find. His family was the light of his life; he was a devoted husband and father.

Billy Turpin

Billy Wayne Turpin On October 11, 2021, Dr. Billy Wayne Turpin was called home to join his loving wife at the age of 85 years old. On this day, the world lost a leader in Christ, son, brother, uncle, father, grandfather, great-grandfather and friend. Billy was born on December 23, 1935 to Hubert and Eva Robison Turpen in Heth, AR. He went on to marry Johan YeVonne Russell on September 4, 1959 in La Porte, TX. They celebrated 57 years of marriage prior to her passing and together raised a strong Christian family. One of 11 children, Billy left school in the 6th grade to help support his family as a sharecropper. Drafted at age 18, Billy was a Private First-Class in the Clean Up Operations in Germany from 1954-1956. Upon returning to the United States, Billy married his beloved wife Johan and began their family while working as a journeyman for various refineries in the Houston-area. Billy answered the Lords calling in 1963 by attending seminary at Texas Baptist Institute, where he would earn his Masters of Theology. A lifelong learner and teacher, he would then go on to continue his education at Lee College and the University of Houston-Clearlake where he would graduate with his Bachelors Degree in Education. During his over 50 years of ministry he also served five years as the Dean of Academics at Heritage Baptist Institute and Seminary in Houston, TX. He later received his Honorary Doctorate of Theology from Texas Baptist Institute.

Obituaries from the 2020 Year Book

Billy Anderson

Bro. Billy L. Anderson, 88, of Mt. Pleasant, TX, passed away on August 10, 2020 in Rusk, TX. He was born on June 14, 1932 in Abilene, TX to Lernon & Mary Chaney. Bro. Anderson served in the ministry for many years working in several churches. He also served in the United States Navy during the Korean War.

Gary Bass

Gary Lynn Bass, 69, fulfilled his kingdom purpose and was welcomed into his eternal home with Jesus on June 20, 2020. He was born to the late Leonard and Lucy Ann Barrett Bass on December 17, 1950, in Dekalb, TX. He accepted his calling into the ministry at a young age and pastored multiple congregations from San Antonio to Northeast Texas including his current church at Hickory Hill outside of Mt. Pleasant, TX. Along with his pastoral ministry, Gary used his positions in school transportation, security, police officer, and defensive driving instructor as an opportunity to share Jesus with those he came in contact with.

Royal Burt

Royal Clinton (RC) Burt, was born in Dierks, Arkansas on July 8, 1934 and passed peacefully from this life at his home in Lonoke surrounded by much of his family on April 2, 2020. He was the son of Mack Duff and Lou Ella (McClure) Burt. He was saved at age 10 at Mount Carmel Missionary Baptist Church in Dierks and surrendered to the ministry in 1952 serving as a faithful pastor of two Arkansas churches-Old Union at Lockesburg (1955-58) and Union Hill at Bradford (1956-57). Also, five churches in Texas-Hubbard Chapel, Dekalb (1958-60); Friendship, Clarksville (1960-65); Carthage Missionary Baptist, Carthage (1965-70); Liberty, Fort Worth (1970-75) and Tanglewood, Atlanta (1984-96). And, one church in Oklahoma-Unity Baptist, Duncan (1975-84). He was presently serving as Associate Pastor of New Testament Baptist Church, Lonoke (1996-2020) and assisted at Family Resource Services of Lonoke. Royal holds higher education degrees in Bible Languages from the Missionary Baptist Seminary in Little Rock; Master of Theology from Texas Baptist Institute and Seminary in Henderson, Texas; and Bachelor of Applied Ministries from Oklahoma Missionary Baptist College Institute and Seminary (OMBC) in Marlow, Oklahoma. He received an Honorary Doctorate from Texas Baptist Institute and Seminary. He also taught at OMBC several years.

Billy Daniels

Bro. Billy Daniels was called home to his Lord and Savior Saturday morning, July 25, 2020. He began his earthly life on September 26, 1938 in Grand Saline, Texas the son of Fred D. and Eula Mae (Smith) Daniels. Bro. Daniels was called in to the ministry at an early age, he began pastoring in 1964 until 2016. He attended the Texas Baptist Institute in Henderson, his pastorates include Liberty Missionary Baptist Church at Blodgett, Texas, Gum Springs Missionary Baptist Church in Henderson, Texas, Lee Hi Missionary Baptist Church in Sulphur Springs, Texas, Johntown Missionary Baptist Church in Johntown, Texas, Walnut Street Baptist Church in Hillsboro, Texas and Bogata Missionary Baptist in Bogata, Texas. Bro. Daniels was very active and served in many different capacities of the American Baptist Association during his 55 years as a dedicated servant of the Lord. He served as a trustee of the Texarkana Baptist Children’s Home, and the Rivercrest ISD School Board, he held the position of Secretary/Treasurer of the Missionary Baptist Association of Texas, and on two occasions was the Secretary/Treasurer of the North East Texas Missions Counsel. Bro. Daniels went on to receive his doctorate in Theology. He served as a Chaplin at McCuistion Hospital, Director of the youth camp, Lions Club, and Red River County CPS.

Melvin Hollifield

Julious Melvin Holifield, age 82 of Cleveland, Texas passed away Saturday, August 15, 2020. He was born June 27, 1938 in Laurel, Mississippi to parents John and Emily Holifield who preceded him in death along with his daughter, Sarah Kay Walton; sisters, Vicie Marzellia Landrum and Sarah Birtha Day; brothers, Alson Holifield, Johnie Holifield, Maurice Holifield and Haurice Holifield; nephew, Dan Holifiled; and niece, Doris Barnett. Survivors include his wife, Ann Holifield; daughter, Deborah Fay Wilkerson; sons, Melvin Ray Holifield and Micah Jay Holifield; brother, James Marvin Holifield; fourteen grandchildren, twelve great-grandchildren, four great-great-grandchildren, along with numerous nieces and nephews. Visitation will be held from 1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m., Thursday, August 20, 2020 at Pace Stancil Chapel, Cleveland, Texas. Services will follow starting at 2:30 p.m., Thursday, August 20, 2020 at Pace Stancil Chapel, Cleveland, Texas. Interment will follow at Ryan Cemetery, Cleveland, Texas. Masonic burial service under the auspice of Tarkington Prairie Lodge #498.

Gene Hoover

Gene Hoover passed from this life on December 28, 2019, at Providence Health Center in Waco. He was born January 18, 1939, in Firebaugh, California to the late Thomas Hiram and Edith Crystal Bell (Clark) Hoover and has lived in Mt. Enterprise since 1974. He received a Bachelors degree of Agronomy from Fresno State College and later obtained his Doctorate of Theology from California Missionary Baptist Institute. Gene spent nearly 45 years in camp work, first at Bogg Springs Baptist Camp in Arkansas and then Pine Springs Baptist Camp outside of Mt. Enterprise. He also enjoyed flying and was a licensed pilot. Mr. Hoover used those skills to take students from camp up in a plane and gave each one a flying certificate. Gene was an active and longtime member of Landmark Missionary Baptist Church and later Smyrna Baptist Church.

John Jones

John Paul Jones went to be with our Lord on January 31, 2020, at Bailey Creek Nursing Facilty in Texarkana, AR. He was born on November 11, 1931 in Winfield, AL to Burris & Loudell Jones. He was a veteran of the Korean war, serving in the U.S. Air Force. In July 1953, he surrendered to the gospel ministry, attending and graduating with a Bachelor of Theology degree from Texas Baptist Institute and Seminary. He pastored Texas churches in Panola County, Monticello, Timpson, Seminole, Borger, Lubbock, Wichita Falls, Fort Worth, and one church in Denver, Colorado. After retiring in November 1998 from Unity Baptist Church in Wichita Falls, he and his wife moved to Texarkana, AR. Also Bro. John was a member of Unity Baptist Church in Texarkana, Texas for the past twenty-one year. He is preceded in death by his parents, two brothers, and eldest son, Larry David Jones. He is survived by his wife of 68 years, Dorothy Faye Jones, two daughters, Judy Anderson and husband Jim Bob, Janie Vogler and husband Lester, one son Jimmy Jones and wife Donna. Seven grandchildren, John Anderson, Jeremy Vogler, Jackie Anderson Haba, Vickie Vogler, Audra Jones Rittenberry, Ashley Jones, Jordan Lee Jones, ten great grandchildren, and a host of friends.

Steve Phillips

Steve Phillips was born July 31, 1956 in Lufkin, Texas to the late Susie Mel (Beam) and Fred Wayne Phillips, and died Monday, September 7, 2020 in a local hospital. Pastor Phillips spent his life in service to the Lord, pastoring churches in the American Baptist Association for 40 years with a true Pastors heart. At the time of his death he pastored San Augustine Missionary Baptist Church, San Augustine, Texas. Pastor Phillips attended Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas and Texas Baptist Institute and Seminary in Henderson, Texas. He was an amazing and loving husband, Dad, and Pappy.

Charles Swilling

Charles Swilling was born on December 3, 1942 in Fort Smith, AR to Frank and Geneva (Phillips) Swilling. At 17, he was saved and baptized at Zion MBC of Roland, OK. On April 22, 1962, he answered Gods call to service in the ministry. Charles attended Texas Baptist Institute and Seminary (TBI) in Henderson, TX where he met his future wife, Jerry. After a long courtship of two months, they were married on February 15, 1963 and remained devoted to each other for 53 years until her passing in 2016. Charles graduated from TBI with a Master of Theology degree on May 5, 1967. He later earned a Doctor of Theology degree on June 2, 1978 while teaching English, Old Testament Introduction, Greek, and Homiletics at TBI. He continued to serve faithfully for 57+ years during which he pastored at 8 churches throughout his ministry. He was Director of Sounding Out the Word Ministries for 17.5 years. A monthly publication which was distributed in 68 countries including U.S. and translated in as many languages. He authored 238 books about Gods word.

Ray Williams

Ray Everette Williams was born August 9, 1940 to Lewis and Opal Williams in Houston Texas. He preached his first sermon in 1965 at Second Baptist Church in Deer Park, Texas. Ray surrendered to the ministry and enrolled in Texas Baptist Institute in September of 1971. He built the Kirkland Auditorium, administrative offices and apartments on Longview Drive. He received his Master and Doctorate degrees from TBI as well as a Ministerial Endurance Honorary Doctorate for his 50 years of ministerial service. He began his pastoral efforts in 1972 at Sulphur Springs Baptist Church in Mt. Enterprise Texas, where he pastored until 1976. In April of 1976 Ray was called to pastor Unity Missionary Baptist Church of Longview, where he ministered faithfully for 43 years. Ray had a passion for missions. He was a good friend and supporter of Roy and Regan Hawthorne in the Navajo Nation, a long-time supporter of Phil Gavila and the work in Guadalajara Mexico, now an organized church; Ricky Knight in Grand Prairie, Texas, also an organized church; Brother Abel Ovieda in Mission, Texas; David Garcia in Camargo, Mexico; Brother Danny Tijerena in McAllen, Texas; Brother Jose Poot in San Pedro, Mexico; Brother Francisco Martinez in Des Moines, Iowa; Brother John Melancon in Israel; Brother Singh in India. Brother Ray has impacted and influenced many lives in his years of service for the Lord. Several young men have surrendered to the ministry under his teaching. One such is Ryan Carlisle, who only recently went to be with the Lord. He worked for the Longview Independent School District for 20 years as a bus driver. He was an accomplished carpenter. He was an avid hunter; he loved hunting deer and elk. He spent Tuesdays with his best friend, Ray Brooks over a table at Hushpuppies in Henderson, going fishin.

Obituaries from the 2019 Year Book

Kenneth Ashlock

Kenneth Wayne Ashlock, age 80, closed his eyes in death, November 19, 2018. Ken was the first of three children born to Waymon, a homebuilder, and Mabel, a homemaker, on June 16, 1938, in the rural community of Clarksville, Arkansas. He was saved in 1952 and was bap- tized by the First Landmark Baptist Church in Clarksville, Arkansas. Ordained on August 28, 1955, he began his first pastorate in 1955 at Center Point Baptist Church in Coal Hill, Arkansas. While on church visitation, he met his future wife, Linda Day, whom he married in September of 1956. In Au- gust of 1958, Ken and Linda began their life-long relationship with New Liberty Baptist Church and the City of Garland. In May of 1962, Ken received his endorsement to do chap- laincy work and became the chaplain for the Garland Po- lice Department. In honor of his service for the Garland Police Department, on August 13, 2008 the conference cen- ter at the police station was named “The Ashlock Room.” Ken’s continuing education for theology has included course work at the Missionary Baptist Seminary in Little Rock, Ar- kansas, Dallas Baptist College, Moody Bible Institute and Tex- as Baptist Institute in Henderson, Texas (honorary doctor- ate). He has served in many leadership positions throughout the American Baptist Association, including serving as past presidents at both the state and national levels. He served for almost thirty years on the Baptist Sunday School Committee (1967-1996), many of which he was chairman (1984-1996).

Frank Battles

Frank Battles was born Sept. 20, 1934, in Center, Tx., Shelby County, to Marvin and Della Dillard Battles. He is survived by his wife of sixty years; Louise Parsons Battles; three daughters and husbands-Joni and Kevin Murphree of Van, Juli and Lenny Myers of Flint, and Gina and Van Kelley of Bul- lard. They were blessed with seven granddaughters along with their husbands and children. Franklin graduated from Cen- ter High School and served three years in the U.S. Army. On March 9, 1958, Frank married Louise Parsons of Longview, Tx. Even though they lived in various areas of Texas, they ulti- mately chose a wooded site in rural Smith County to build THE CABIN. Franklin’s education included an A.A., Tyler Junior College; B.B.A. UT Tyler; and a M.M., Th.M., S.T.D., and Ph.D., Religion from Bethany Theological Seminary. Dr. Battles also completed Advanced Military Police Officers School; U.S. Air Force Com- mand & Staff College; Air War College; National Defense Uni- versity; Sterling Management Institute in Washington, D.C., and President’s Association Program of the American Management Association. During a twenty-one year radio/television broad- casting career, he advanced from staff announcer to executive vice president of a multi-station corporation. After leaving the broadcast field, he served as president of two vocational institu- tions including Tyler Commercial College. His most cherished position was that of Minister of the Gospel to three separate congregations. He served the Lord he loved in that capacity for twenty-eight years, including Pruitt Lake Baptist of Avinger, TX; Good Shepard Baptist of Shepherd, TX and Heritage Baptist in Tyler by which he was voted Pastor Emeritus in April, 2012.

Ryan Carlisle

Ryan Johns Carlisle, a servant of the Lord, was rewarded out of this life on 6/27/19. Ryan Carlisle was the intention- al Godly leader of his home. He loved on Bridgit daily, always going the extra mile to show his affection. Their mornings spent in the word, worship, and prayer will forever be cherished. He was a constant courter of his daugh- ter Ava’s love and affection. Their frequent Daddy/daughter dates and times spent together were an example to fathers everywhere of how to treat your daughter. With Max, Ryan always had time. Times playing sports, hunting, or fishing were always a priority and he always jumped at the chance for quality time. Ryan without a doubt had a God given love for youth. It wasn’t just a job to him, and numerous times he would take kids into his house for even extended stays when their home life wasn’t good. His passions was discipleship. He constantly poured into teens hearts through mentorship and challenging Bible reading programs, but most importantly through modeling a passionate love for Christ. Ryan’s greatest pastime was reading God’s word and prayer. No matter how late the night or early the morning, Ryan would always gravitate to the Bible. Ryan was preceded in death by his grandparents Tommie Carl- isle and Kenneth and Jenny Johns. He is survived by his wife Bridgit Carlisle and two precious kids Ava and Max, Father and Mother Terry and Kathy Carlisle, Brother Tad and wife Mary Grace, Grandmother Helen Carlisle and numerous nieces and nephews.

Port A. DuBose

Dr. Port A. (Boots) DuBose, age 91, of Gary, Texas passed away on September 6, 2019 at his home in Gary, Texas. Dr. Dubose was born July 24, 1928 in San Augustine County to the late Pete and Linnie Irene Wright DuBose, the youngest son in a family of nine children. He married the love of his life, Oneida Kelly, on August 4, 1949, and they enjoyed a wonderful life together. After graduating from High School at Brookland, Texas he joined the U.S. Army Air Corp. and Air Force during World War II. He served in the Occupation Forces in Tokyo, Japan, assigned to Headquarters Squadron Far East Air Force, from November 1946 until April, 1949, and attained the rank of SGT. Upon his return to the United States, he was stationed at Barksdale Air Force Base. Dr. Dubose was saved on September 2, 1954 at Parkwood Baptist Church in Buna, Texas. He and his wife were baptized together on September 5, 1954 in Trout Creek near Kirbyville, Texas. Dr. DuBose was ordained as a deacon by Parkwood Baptist Church of Buna, Texas on December 4, 1954. He surrendered to the call of the ministry and licensed to preach the gospel on November 25, 1956. Dr. DuBose became ordained as a Minister of the Gospel on December 13, 1957. He enrolled in Texas Baptist Institute and Seminary in September, 1967 and graduated from TBI in May of 1971, receiving a Master of Theology Degree. He became an instructor at TBI in 1974. He loved to teach, especially English. His teaching helped equip countless young ministers to become effective pastors and preach the gospel to further God’s kingdom. On June 3, 1977 he received a Doctor of Theology Degree. During his years as instructor at Texas Baptist Institute & Seminary, he had many articles published in The Baptist Monitor and wrote several books of outlines on various books of the Bible. He was known for his expertise in diagramming sentences from the King James Version of the Bible. He wrote his own teaching material for the subjects of Personal Evangelism and Pastoral Evangelism. His textbook entitled “Mechanics of Bible English” was published in 1981. Dr. DuBose retired from teaching at TBI in 2012 after 38 years. Dr. Port A. DuBose pastored six different ABA churches during his lifetime: Crossroads Baptist Church, North Bonami Baptist Church, Beulah Springs Baptist Church, all in Kirbyville, Texas area and Calvary Baptist Church in Silsbee, Texas. He then accepted the call to pastor Eastside Baptist Church in Gary, Texas on November 8, 1970. He was pastor of Eastside Baptist Church for 28 years, retiring on November 9, 1998

Steven Duffitt

Steven Philip Duffitt, 66 went home to be with Lord June 14, 2019. Steve was born August 15, 1952 in Anderson, Indiana. He spent 7 1⁄2 years in the Air Force as a medic. While stationed at Lackland AFB in San Antonio, Tx he started attending Hillside Missionary Baptist Church where Br. David Ward was the pastor. In 1977 under Br. Ward’s ministry Steve came to know the LORD as his SAVIOUR, he was saved. Shortly thereafter he felt God’s calling into the ministry, and he answered that call. After, his Air Force tour of duty was over he moved to Little Rock, Arkansas where he started attending the Missionary Baptist Seminary. He graduated in 1982 with a bachelor’s degree in Bible Theology and a degree in Bible Lan- guages. He then moved to Brownsville, Texas where he pastored a missionary Baptist Church for 10 years. He then moved to Oregon City, Oregon where he pastored there also for 8 and in 2000 he moved to San Antonio where he started pastoring the “Missionary Baptist Church of San Antonio” till the present. He also enjoyed being a woodworker. He is survived by his wife Mary Duffitt, daughters Katherine M. Hearn and husband Woody and Rosalyn M. Saenz and hus- band AL. Grandchildren are Jordan Hornock, Caleb Hearn, Haley Hearn, Cooper Hearn, Cameron Saenz and Eric Saenz. His mother Rosalyn MaeHuffman Duffitt, sisters Lou Ann Jen- nings and husband Ben and Rebecca Walker. Nieces Andrea Westphal, Elizabeth Cess, nephews Robert Jennings, Joseph Jennings and Phillip Walker and their spouses and children.

George Goodman

Dr. George W. Goodman, loving father and grandfather went home to be with his Lord on Tuesday, August 20, 2019 at the age of 94. George was born on September 26, 1924 in Shamrock, Oklahoma to Charles Good- man and Anna Goodman. He served in the United States Coast Guard from 1943-1946 with a tour in the South Pacific. He was a carpenter by trade, and was called to the ministry in 1960. He received his Doctorate of Ministerial Endurance from Texas Baptist Institute and Seminary in 2004. He served as pastor for Westville Church (Westville, OK), Kil- gore Missionary Baptist Church (Kilgore, TX), East Post Oak Church (Paris, TX) and Brazos Street Baptist Church (Lockhart, TX) in a career that spanned more than 52 years. On December 22, 1942 he married Lucile Murr and they raised two sons, Terry and David, and a daughter, Linda. After the passing of his wife Lucile, George married Mildred Frick. George had an all-consuming passion for life, family and the ministry of Christ. He never lost his joy for carpentry and lov- ingly produced beautiful pieces of wood work and furniture for family and friends. He was a published author and an accom- plished poet in his own right. His inspirational poems reflect his deep love for Christ, his family and the beauty of nature. He was well known for his generous spirit, profound love and unrelenting faith.

William Lynch

William Lynch (Bill) was born on the 4th of July, 1931, in San Augustine County, Texas, to James Roy and Lula Mae (Cooper) Lynch. He grew up farming as the son of a share-cropper in Shelby, San Augustine, and Nacogdoches counties. On April 16, 1947, Bill knelt beside his bed, asked the Lord into his heart, and was born again. On January 12, 1953, he surrendered to the ministry of the Gospel. On July 1, 1955, Bill was ordained by Galena Park Missionary Baptist Church of Galena Park, Texas. He entered Texas Baptist Institute and Seminary (TBI), in Henderson, Texas, where he met Helen Seals, who was the first woman to graduate from TBI with a Master of English Bible degree. Bill and Helen married on December 30, 1955. Bill graduated with a Bachelor of Theology degree on May 9, 1958. He pastored Highway Missionary Baptist Church in Huntington, Texas, and Union Cross Missionary Baptist Church in Nacogdoches, Texas. Bill served as a State Missionary sent by Galena Park Missionary Baptist Church, and endorsed by the Missionary Baptist Associ- ation of Texas, from 1960 to 1967. In 1961, Bill moved his family of four to San Antonio, Texas. Bill was the founding pastor of Missionary Baptist Church of San Antonio, then located on Austin Highway, and was instrumental in the organization of other churches and missions in South Texas. In December 2004, TBI conferred upon Bill, having completed fifty years in the ministry of our Lord, and having sat under the teachings of Dr. A. J. Kirkland, the honorary degree of Doctorate of Ministerial Endurance. In January 2013, Joe Caballero joined with the family to assist with Bill’s care. Joe and his family members provided constant, loving companionship and support to Bill and his family over the next six years. Bill became a resident of Regent Care Center of Oakwell Farms in November 2016, where he continued ministering to others through his smiles and prayers until he left this walk of life.

William Myrick

Dr. William Kenneth “Bill” Myrick reached the end of his life here on earth on September 14, 2019. He was greeted in glory by his previously departed and dearly loved wife, Marilyn Joy Myrick, as well as other close family members, William Richard March, Amanda French Crawford and Brian Cunningham. He is survived by his five children Sandra Moore and her husband James, Sharon French and her husband Estol, Jr., Cin- dy March, Allen Myrick and his wife Lauren, and Dr. David Myrick and his wife Sharla, as well as thirty-one grandchildren, thirty-two great-grandchildren, his church family, fellow pastors, lay workers and many oth- ers. Brother Bill, Kenneth, Uncle Kenny, or GranGran, as his grandchildren knew him, was born to Ernest Halford and Thel- ma Myrick in Bingen, Arkansas on Sept. 10, 1930. He accepted Christ on Aug. 17, 1944 at 13 years of age and followed the Lord in baptism. Upon graduation from high school, he married “the prettiest girl in Arkansas” and moved to the Houston area to build a life for his wife and family. He began working at Sanitary Dairy and then moved to Coca Cola before finally working with Brown & Root, until his retirement from his secular job. While attending Foy Lane Baptist Church, Bro. Myrick was licensed to the ministry on March 5, 1958, later moving to Waynecrest Baptist Church where he then began his pastorate. The church relocated and changed its name to Harmony Missionary Baptist Church, where he pastored for over 60 years until his passing. Bro. Bill became a master of many trades, a loving father and husband, and was a truly great neighbor, men- tor and friend to many. He was an active supporter of the scho- lastic organizations of his children and grandchildren and was revered by all. He was honored by the Heritage Baptist Institute with an Honorary Doctorate of Divinity in 2012. Dr. Myrick truly loved the Lord and made it a practice to read the Word of God in its entirety every year. Our Pastor and friend lived a full, 89-year life and will be missed by all who knew him. His desire today would be that you come to know Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior before it is too late and that you take care of one another in His name.

Ricky O Neal

Ricky O’Neal, age 64, of Hen- derson, Texas, formerly of Kirby, passed away Thursday, June 20, 2019. He was born on May 20, 1955, in Alexandria, Indiana, the son of Alex Richard O’Neal and Lema Sue Bar- entine O’Neal. He was preceded in death by his parents; and one sister, Shelah Whisler. Ricky was a graduate of Texas Baptist Institute and Seminary and served in ministry for several years. He was still actively involved in a prison ministry that was very important to him. He also served as a deacon at Grandview Missionary Baptist Church. He enjoyed gardening, hunting, running his dogs, snow skiing and the mountains of Colorado. He is survived by his wife, Cathleen “Cat” O’Neal of Hender- son, Texas; four children and their spouses, Kandy and James Owens of Kirby, Matthew and Sarah O’Neal of Kirby, Micah and Dyana O’Neal of Glenwood and Gage and Lecie O’Neal of Benton; sixteen grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; four sisters and brothers-in-law, Patsy and Carroll Ray Grant of Benton, Joyce and Harold Turner of Glenwood, Sue and Joel Seals of Glenwood and Peggy and Danny Smith of Benton; and several nieces and nephews.

Robert Redus

Robert Conrad Redus, Jr, passed away Tuesday, February 19, 2019 at the age of 60. He was born October 17, 1958 to Robert C. and Virdie L. Redus in Little Rock, Arkansas. He graduated from the Arkansas School for the Blind in 1977. After receiving his Bachelor’s in Theology from the Missionary Baptist Sem- inary, he was ordained as a Mis- sionary Baptist Minister at Unity Missionary Baptist Church in 1983. Upon completing his training at the World Services for the Blind, he moved to Richardson, Texas where he began his career with the Federal Government. He retired from the Internal Revenue Service in December of 2017 after 30 years of service. He was a long-time member and former pastor of Golden Meadows Baptist Church. Robert loved his family and studying God’s word. He decided to go to Mexico to serve the Lord by teaching at the Seminary. He loved Mexico, the food, the weather, but most of all his ‘beauti- ful’ church family. He was a friend to all, he served others, he was generous, and had a great sense of humor. ‘Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints.” Psalm 116:15 He is preceded in death by his father, Robert Conrad Redus, Sr. He is survived by his mother, Virdie L. Redus and siblings Cat French (Steve Becker), Carolyn Korte (‘Jethro’), Richard Redus and Rebecca Redus; His children, Gina Semrau (Chris), Robert C. Redus III (Melanie); His four grandchildren, Jason, Sophia, Cameron, and Jett; Alexis Black who he loved like a grandchild, and cherished friend, Vivian Wang.

William Simpson

William Richard Simpson, 95, of Midland, Texas, was welcomed into the loving arms of his Lord on October 28, 2019. Known as “William” to his family, “Richard” to his late wife Dorothy and her family, “Dad” or “Daddy” to his daughters, “Brother Bill” or “Suitcase” to his fellow preachers and friends, he is “Papaw Buddy” to his many grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He was born September 22, 1924 to the late Harvey and Ruth Simpson, the eldest of six children in a family of rice farmers. Raised in DeWitt, Arkansas County, he joined the Navy Air Force at the age of 18 and proudly served his country during World War II as an Aviation Radioman Second Class and Gunner/ Radar Operator on a patrol bomber seaplane known as a PBY. He wed his high school sweetheart, Dorothy Elizabeth Henderson, and after the War ended they began raising their family, of whom he was immensely proud. He farmed his family’s lands until answering the Lord’s call to preach in the summer of 1955. It was while earning his degree in Bible Languages from the Missionary Baptist Seminary in Little Rock, Arkansas that he gained the nickname “Suitcase Simpson” for the oversized briefcase in which he carried his textbooks. He pastored several churches in Arkansas prior to becoming an “Interstate Missionary” with the American Baptist Association and moving his family to West Texas, which Dorothy immediately dubbed “the foreign mission field”. In Midland, he was the founding Pastor of Oaklawn Park Missionary Baptist Church and, later, Tall City Missionary Baptist Church, and President of the West Texas Baptist Institute for more than 20 years, where he was also an instructor. He was a proud member of the Midland Downtown Lions Club for decades and served in various positions, including President and Chaplain. He loved telling folks he was the only “Lion” Baptist preacher in Midland. He was a substitute school teacher who was actually loved by his students, a member of Hearts Alive, a former Chaplain for the Midland Police Department, and an avid fan of the University of Arkansas Razorbacks.

Obituaries from the 2018 Year Book

Calvin Hancock

Rev. Hancock died peacefully at his home surrounded by his family January 18, 2018. Rev. Joseph Calvin Hancock was born May 7, 1932 in the Rosehill Community of Timpson, Texas. He was the fifth child of eight born to the marriage of Carlos Grant and Mattie Lucille Dorsey Hancock. He was raised and schooled in Timpson graduating with the class of 1950. Calvin was a graduate of the Texas Baptist Institute and received his honorary doctorate there. He married Jo Ann Langford in December of 1956 and they celebrated 61 years together. Calvin worked in local broadcasting in both Carthage and Henderson for many years. He was ordained in October of 1957 and spent 60 years in the ministry throughout East Texas and mission work in the Houston area. He is preceded in death by his parents. Rev. Hancock is survived by his loving wife, Jo Ann Hancock of Carthage; children, Janet Humber and husband Greg of Carthage, Donna Williams and husband John, Jr. of En- glish, Marian Ewald and husband Todd of Wapakoneta, Ohio, and David Hancock and wife Renee of Georgetown.

Roy Hawthorne

Roy Hawthorne Sr., one of the most recognizable Navajo Code Talkers, died at the age of 92. He was one of the most active members the Navajo Code Talkers Association and served as its treasurer for many years. He was serving as the association’s vice president at the time of his death. While he didn’t write a book about his experience as a Code Talker during World War II, he made numerous public appearances on behalf of the association and was interviewed several times for documentaries on the role the Code Talkers played in winning the war in the Pacific. “People looked up to him,” said Link. “He made friends easily.” Like others who served as a Code Talker, Hawthorne took the vow of silence seriously and never told anyone what he did in the war until 1968 when the use of the Navajo language as a code was declassified and the Code Talkers were free to talk about it. “I never even told my family about it until we were told it was all right,” Hawthorne said in a 2010 interview. “He was not only a hero and a warrior but (he) was a true spokesman who worked on behalf of the welfare of the Navajo Code Talkers consistently. It was a privilege to have known him.” One of his projects during the last decade was helping raise funds for a museum honoring the Code Talkers and other Navajos who served in the military. Hawthorne always thought it was ironic that the federal government, which had tried so hard in the early 1900s to force Navajo kids who went to BIA boarding schools to stop using their language, asked these same students to use their language as a code against the Japanese. He was 17 when he enlisted. He came after the original 29, all of whom have since died, and at the time of his death was one of only a dozen Code Talkers who are still alive. He also served in the Korean War but wasn’t a Code Talker during that war, said Link. When talking about the code in his later years, he said it was developed for the war and was simple to any Navajo but totally confusing to the Japanese. “The longer we live, the more we realize the importance of what we did, but we are still not heroes,” he said in 2015, stressing that as a Code Talker he and the others made a lasting contribution to the war effort. A pastor after getting out of the armed services, Hawthorne said his proudest achievement was being a Code Talker and being able to travel and talk to people about his experiences. “God had it planned out,” Hawthorne once said, “that the Navajo language would be used to save democracy.”

Tommy Horn

Bro. Tommy L. Horn of Mount Pleasant was born on January 17, 1946 to Tommy J. and Dollie (Dement) Horn. He married his wife, Darlene, November 21, 1964. Darlene is the daughter of another well-beloved ministering couple, James N. Bell, Jr. and Myrtle (Randle)Bell. Tommy served as the minister of four Titus County churches between 1972 and 2011. During that time period, he also spent a brief time with Hillcrest Baptist Church, Lamesa, TX and at Friendship Baptist Church in Hughes Springs. He ended his ministry in the service of the Hopewell Baptist Church in Clarksville. The four churches he pastored in Titus County were: Hickory Hill, Argo, Old Union and Grace Temple. It is ironic that after pastoring so long in the Hopewell Baptist Association in Titus County, the last church he pastored was also called Hopewell. He served as clerk for the Hopewell Baptist Association three different times between 1976 and 1987. Bro. Horn was also well beloved by those in the Red River Bowie Association, which fellowships in the North East Texas Missions Council. All these associational gatherings honored him at his passing. He passed to his eternal reward at age 72, October 5, 2018 and was buried at Liberty Hill Cemetery.

Obituaries from the 2017 Year Book

Marvin Gardner

Brother Marvin A. Gardner, age 80, of Tyler, was called home to our Lord on Saturday, September 30, 2017. Bro. Gardner was born, Marvin Ar- nette Gardner, in Houston, TX on July 5, 1937 to Sheirell and Billie Gardner. The family moved to New Waverly, TX where he graduated from New Waverly High School in 1955. He was a veteran of the United States Army. Bro. Gardner owned barber shops in Huntsville and Conroe while completing two years of education at Sam Houston State University. In 1963, Bro. Gardner began studies at Texas Baptist Institute & Seminary, graduating in 1967. Bro. Gardner was a Missionary Baptist pastor for 47 years. He pastored churches in Avenger, Gary, Johntown and Greggton, Texas. He moved to Tyler, TX in 1975 where he started Her- itage Baptist Church as a mission project. Bro. Gardner then started Vanderbilt Baptist Church as a mission project in Tyler in 1999, where he pastored until his retirement from the min- istry in 2011. Bro. Gardner also served as a recording clerk for the Missionary Baptist Association of Texas for 16 years.

David Kelly

Brother David Kelley, age 65 of League City, Texas passed away Sunday, July 2, 2017 at Clear Lake Regional Hos- pital in Webster, Texas. David was born on November 10, 1951 in Musk- ogee, Oklahoma and was a resident of League City since 1979. He served in the United States Army during the Vietnam War from 1969-1971. David was a proud member of Alvin Missionary Baptist Church in Alvin where he served in many capacities including Associate Pastor. He was an instructor at the Heritage Baptist Institute.

J. T. McNabb

Brother J. T. McNabb, 89, of Blossom passed away Tuesday June 13, 2017. J.T. was born October 17, 1927 in Clarksville, Texas a son of James Thomas McNabb, Sr. and Elvira Mor- row McNabb. He married Yvonne Watson May 24, 1947 in Avery, Tex- as. They had just celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary. He was a retired Minister of 60 years having attended Texas Baptist In- stitute in Henderson, TX and serving churches at East Post Oak at Detroit, Murvaul at Carthage, Pleasant Hill at Arkan- sas, Liberty at Detroit, Mt. Sylvia at Mt. Pleasant, Aiken Grove at Clarksville and as interim pastor at Hillcrest at Paris, and Johntown MBC at Johntown. He served his country in the Army during WWII. He was a member of the Masonic Lodge for 62 years, currently being a member of Rosalee Lodge 527 and a member of East Post Oak Missionary Baptist Church. Brother J.T. was a good and faithful servant of our Lord who never stopped witnessing to others. Even nurses who cared for him during his last days were graced by a vigorous testimony of the Lord Jesus Christ. Brother J.T. looked forward to going home to be with the Lord after a life of long and faithful service to Him. He will be deeply missed by his family and friends.

Don Shultz

Brother Don H. Shultz, 81 of Kerens, passed away Monday, April 17, 2017 at his residence. He was born April 19, 1935 in Sherman to Zelmer Law- son and Vera Oleta Walker Shultz. He married Julia Betty Clayton Jan- uary 1, 1957 in Bonham. He retired after serving 60 years as a Pastor. He is preceded in death by his parents, son Donald Mark Shultz; brother Z.L Shultz. Don is survived by his wife Julia Shultz; daughter Lisa Ann Shultz Plemons and husband Douglas; two grandchildren, Jason Shultz and Andrew Pleamon. Brother in law Hershel Joe Clayton and wife Sue Clayton. Nephew and nieces, Jerry Shultz, Richard Shultz, Eddy Shultz, Allen Shultz, John Mur- ray Riddles, Mary Ella Zarones, James Riddles Joe Bob Clayton.

Alton Willingham

Brother Alton Eland Willingham of Duncanville, Texas went to be with his heavenly Father on Tuesday, April 26, 2016 at the age of 80. Alton was born in Snyder Texas on August 3, 1935. Alton proudly served in the Unit- ed States Air Force from 1956-1960. He served our Lord in the min- istry pastoring Temple Missionary Baptist Church for forty years. He retired from the ministry in 2014. He also retired from Magellan Pipeline in 2014. Throughout his life he was dedicated to his Lord, his family and his many friends. During his ministry he led many souls to Christ. He also had exemplary work ethics. He was a won- derful husband and daddy and a great provider for his family.

Obituaries from the 2016 Year Book

A.J. Henderson

Brother A. J. Henderson was born July 26, 1926 in Alderbranch, Texas to James Nathaniel Henderson and Ida Elvada Langston Henderson. Bro. Henderson was a minister for over 60 years and was a member of the Memory Lane Baptist Church. He also served as Chaplain for the American Legion and the DAV.

Amon Langston

Rev. Amon Langston, at the age of 88, of Odessa, passed away Monday, January 25, 2016 in Odessa, Texas. Amon was born in Wooster, Arkansas to Alby and Edna Williams Langston No- vember 4, 1927. He attended and graduated from Central High School in Cape Girardeau, MO. He married Martha Ann Stanley on August 26, 1951 at Second Baptist Church in Malvern, AR. He graduated from Missionary Baptist Seminary in Little Rock, AR. He pastored churches in Arkansas, Seminole, Texas and West 34th St (Westwood Baptist Church in Odessa, Texas.) He led in the organization of Beacon Baptist Church in May of 1959. He became Pastor Emeritus on January 2, 2010, being honored for 51 years of service as pastor. He was Moderator and Clerk for the West Texas New Mexico Association, now known as South- west Association of Missionary Baptist Churches. He worked as an AC Technician for Atmos Natural Gas for 30 years. He was a 32nd Mason with Lodge 955 and Scottish Rite of El Paso, Texas.

Lynn McBryde

Rev. Lynn Wilson McBryde June 18, 1918 - August 20, 2016 Rev. Lynn Wilson McBryde, age 98, of Texarkana, Arkan- sas, died Saturday, August 20, 2016 in a local nursing home. Rev. McBryde was born June 18, 1918 in Palmyra, Arkansas. He wasaformerPastorofMurvaulMissionaryBaptistChurch,Avery Missionary Baptist Church and Unity Missionary Baptist Church and a U. S. Army veteran, having served during World War II.

John Moles

John was born December 12, 1958, in New Boston, Texas, to Clebert Lee and Gladys Lorene Horn Moles. On February 23, 1981, he was married to Debbie Kay Litton in New Boston, Tex- as. John was an Ordained Minister, a Correctional Officer with the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, was a member of De Kalb Masonic Lodge # 9 and a member of Austin Chapel Mis- sionary Baptist Church in De Kalb, Texas.