Jerry Gifford Southern, Sr., a longtime resident of Council Hill, Oklahoma, passed from this life on Monday, May 28, 2018 at his home in Council Hill at the age of 79. Jerry was born on June 18, 1938 in Kinta, Oklahoma to Ray Autrey Southern and Norene (Cole) Southern.
After high school, Jerry attended college at Connors State University in Warner, and later attended Northeast Oklahoma State University and Oklahoma Baptist University. Jerry served in several Oklahoma communities as a Baptist minister throughout his working career of over 50 years. He pastored in West Liberty, OK, Crescent Valley, OK, Porum, Elm Grove, Council Hill, and Barnsdale sharing God's word.
Jerry was married to Sue Ella Bailes on August 28, 1958 in Stigler, OK. He and Sue shared over 50 years of marriage before her death. Jerry later married Carolyn Diana Rainwater on May 3, 2009 in Haskell County, Oklahoma. Jerry spent considerable time raising horses and colts, which he loved. Most of all Jerry was a loving son, brother, husband, father, and grandfather. His kind spirit and loving heart will certainly be missed by his family and many good friends.
He is preceded in death by his mother, Norene Cole Southern and father, Ray A. Southern; his brother, Autrey Thomas Southern; a sister, Barbara Jo Solesbe; his wife, Sue Ella Southern; and second wife, Carolyn Rainwater.
Jerry is survived by a son, Jerry Gifford "Gip" Southern Jr. and wife Melissa of Council Hill, OK; a daughter, Ann Taylor of Council Hill, OK; a daughter, Ginger McWhirt and husband Lonnie of Porum; grandchildren, Mary Southern, Colt Southern, Dooley Southern, Rowdy Southern and wife Tasha, Linsey Barnes and husband Donald, Lacy Jo Southern, Sadie Mae Southern, Jessica Lancaster and husband Lonnie of Oklahoma City, Aubrey Findley and husband Grant of Phoenix, AZ, Kyndle Clemishire and husband Cobey of Padre Island, TX, Sara Jones and husband Cody of Claremore. Christina Mann and husband Chad of Porum, OK and Brad McWhirt and wife Leanne of Muskogee, OK; numerous great grandchildren; a brother, Hugh Southern and wife Pat of Muskogee, OK; by other extended family, numerous longtime church friends, and many good friends.
Following cremation, a private memorial service will be held at a later date. Arrangements are under the direction of Integrity Funeral Service of Henryetta.