Gerald Bruce LunsfordLincoln, AR, 1942 - 2018 0comment
Gerald Bruce Lunsford passed January 24, 2018, at the Willard Walker Hospice Home in Fayetteville. He was born August 3,1942, in Westville, Oklahoma. Gary, the son of Bruce and Rosa Lee Lunsford, began his life in Arkansas when the family moved to Bentonville and then settled in Fayetteville four years later. The family joined Central Methodist Church. Gary attended Washington Elementary and was a 1960 Fayetteville High School graduate. He played for the 1957 undefeated football team and embraced Fayetteville's public schools' integration. He began his mastery of carpentry and woodworking by working with and learning from his dad. He was a part of the construction crew that built the Mountain Inn across from the Washington County courthouse. Gary joined the Marine Corps in 1960 but in less than six months received an honorable discharge after an accident from faulty explosives caused deafness in his left ear. He returned to Fayetteville where he earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts at the University of Arkansas. Gary's incredible life experiences continued when he moved to Washington, D.C. in the1960s and joined the Capitol Hill police force. During his time away from Fayetteville, he learned and loved skydiving with over four hundred jumps, learned to snow ski, raced stock cars where he suffered a spinal injury, and even attended the Woodstock music festival. He tried out for the Washington Redskins football team and earned membership but did not join and instead came back to Fayetteville to support family. Gary's life path then included being a bouncer with his older brother, Porter, at The Huddle Club on College Avenue, an art teacher at Woodland Junior High School and even running the horse-riding concession at Devil's Den State Park for a summer. He then opened his woodworking shop in a bay at the Schlitz beer distributorship but soon established his shop in the old Fayetteville Lumber Company yard behind the store fronts in the Dickson Street entertainment district.
It was then he married the love of his life, Marty Jones, fathered and raised three sons, Jason, Quentin and Allan. He continued carpentry, woodworking and substitute teaching until he received the call to go into ministry.
He organized and traveled on several mission trips in South America, Africa and Russia. Gary became Pastor of visitation at Central United Methodist Church. He pastored several Methodist churches in Northwest Arkansas, including St. James and Wiggins in Fayetteville and congregations at Rheas Mill, Winslow, Lincoln and Morrow. He loved God, his family, the Razorbacks, riding his motorcycle, old cars, down-home cooking, chocolate cake, stray dogs, Siamese cats, mission work, talking about old Fayetteville and story-telling, traveling, Sunday afternoon drives, backyard barbecues, swimming in the river and woodworking. Most of all, Gary loved people.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Bruce and RosaLee Lunsford, and two brothers, Porter and David Lunsford. He is survived by his wife, Marty, his three sons, Jason, Quentin and Allan, five grandchildren, his sister, Barbara Pryor, and his brother, Scott Lunsford. Gary did more in his 75 years than most would do in a hundred. He was a popular and well-loved man and will be sorely missed.
A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m., Tuesday, January 30, 2018 at Central United Methodist Church in Fayetteville, under the direction of Moore's Chapel. To sign the online guest book, visit www.mooresfuneralchapel.com.
Published January 27, 2018
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206 West Center Street, P.O. Box 1149, Fayetteville, AR