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Saturday, November 21, 2020

Obituary - Gerald L. Berry Jr.

Rev. Gerald (Jerry) L. Berry, Jr. was born April 26, 1938, to Gerald and Verl (Baugher) Berry at Trenton, Missouri. Gerald was raised on a farm west of Bedford, Missouri on the Grand River. He graduated from a one-room school in Bedford, Missouri in 1952 and from Tina-Avalon High School in 1956. He entered into the presence of his Lord on November 18, 2020, at home surrounded by his family.

He joined the Air Force in November 1956 and served 6½ years active duty with one tour in St. Anthony, Newfoundland. While stationed at Hutchinson, Kansas Air Force Radar Station, he met Janice C. Clark and they married on December 28, 1958. To this union was given five children. After active duty in the Air Force, Gerald worked for the Kansas Air National Guard, Wilbeck Manufacturing, and Far-Mar-Co, Inc.

Gerald later spent another 18 1/2 years in the Kansas Air National Guard to provide so his children could attend Bible college, retiring in 1996 at the rank of Senior Master Sergeant (E-8). He received the Meritorious Service Medal, the Air Force Commendation Medal with 2 oak clusters, the Air Force Achievement Medal with 2 oak clusters, the National Defense Medal twice, and many other military honors. He was selected Outstanding Airman of the Year for the state of Kansas Air National Guard in 1989.

The most important event of Gerald’s life was at the age of 12 when he placed his faith in Jesus Christ as his Savior and received the forgiveness of sin and eternal life. His cousin told him of Christ and his need for salvation at his grandparents’ farm. Soon after he met Jan, he followed the Lord in baptism and surrendered his life to God’s will. This set the course for the rest of his life on a wonderful journey of faithfully serving the Lord leading many to Christ and leaving a strong spiritual legacy that will continue on in the lives of his family and the lives of so many others. His life verse was Romans 12:1, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service,” and this verse truly exemplified his life.

Gerald is a graduate of Louisiana Baptist University with a Ph.D. in Biblical Studies. He served over 60 years of ministry and as a pastor. His sons served with him for a total of 32 years. He helped found and served as Associate Pastor at Bible Baptist Church in Hutchinson, Kansas; pastored Faith Baptist Church in Attica, Kansas; pastored First Bible Baptist Church in Turon, Kansas; pastored Bible Baptist Church in Woodward, Oklahoma; founded and pastored Grace Baptist Church at Sedalia, Missouri; and founded and pastored Southland Baptist Church in Belton, Missouri. He served 5 years as the Missouri State Representative for the Baptist Bible Fellowship and 3 years on the Board of Directors at Heartland Baptist Bible College, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The Lord used him to touch the lives of thousands of people and raise millions of dollars for the cause of Christ. His passion was for the things of the Lord – preaching, teaching, soul-winning, inviting others to church, church planting, missions, discipleship, mentoring young pastors, and Christian fellowship. He always placed the Lord first then family and himself last.

He is proceeded in death by his parents; two brothers, Alfred Warren Berry, Ronald Eugene Berry; one daughter-in-law, Carol Berry; three great-grandchildren, Cameron Pearson, Ashlyn Pearson, and Tanner Pearson and four brothers-in-law, Francis Dale Davenport, James E. Clark, Clifford Hughes, and Dick Clayton.

He is survived by his wife, Janice (Clark) of the home; three daughters, Janet Lea (Doug) Pence of Sullivan Missouri; Susan Lyn (Daniel) French of Knob Noster Missouri, and Toni Lynn Robertson of Woodward, Oklahoma; two sons, Rev. Gary Lee Berry (Charlotte) of Belton Missouri, and Rev. Galen Leo Berry (Melissa) of Norman Oklahoma; five sisters, Thelma Davenport (Francis), Lucille Hughes (Clifford), Dixie Golden (Roy), Joyce Clayton (Dick), Janice Bigham (Larry); 18 grandchildren, Dani (Robertson) Roberson (Johnnie), Jodi Pearson (Steve), Eric Robinson, Patrick Pence (Melissa), Ben Pence (Lora), Ryan Robinson (Nici), John Wesley Berry (Rachel), Robert Pence (Nicole), Brian Gerald Berry, Adam Leo Berry (Naomi), Al French (Megan), Caleb Berry (Vanessa), Grant Leighton Berry (Natalie), Sierra (Berry) Dailey (Hunter), Emily French, Timothy French, Elisa French, Emma French, and 17 great-grandchildren; Paige (Pearson) Bennett (Jayton), Doug Bigham (Katie), Ian Robinson, Julian Robinson, Jenna Robinson, Jadyn Robinson, Brooklyn Pearson, Bayle Robinson, Kanyon Mooreland, Reagan Richards, Ben Mooreland, Thor Robinson, Wade Robinson, Addison Berry, Samantha Berry, Aurum Robinson, Eli Berry, many nieces and nephews, many friends, and a host of people who knew him as Pastor, friend, and a father figure. He had no greater joy than to know that his children and grandchildren walk in the truth of God and are devoted followers of Christ.

Gerald also leaves behind a host of other family members, a wonderful church family, and friends all across this nation and around the world.

The service will be Tuesday, November 24, 2020, at Southland Baptist Church, Belton Missouri at 10:00 a.m. and visitation from 8:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. Interment will be Wednesday, November 25, 2020, at 11:00 a.m. at the Berry Family Cemetery, Galt, Missouri. The service will be officiated by his two sons, Rev. Gary Lee Berry and Rev. Galen Leo Berry, with the involvement of his grandchildren. The service will be live cast on Facebook Live and can be found at the accounts of Southland Baptist Church, Belton, Missouri, and Gary Berry.

It was Gerald’s and the family’s wish that in lieu of flowers memorial donations be given to the Mission Fund of Southland Baptist Church, 16205 Vicie Avenue, Belton, Missouri 64012.

Due to the COVID 19 virus and the safety of all, the family asks that face masks be worn, and social distancing be observed as much as possible. Mask will be provided.

Arrangements: Cullen Funeral Home, Raymore, Missouri 816.322.5278