Lieutenant Colonel Mervin Bryson Howard, Jr., son of the late Mr. and Mrs. Mervin Howard of Garland, TN, passed away June 6, 2019. Affectionately known as Mr. M.B., he was a longstanding, dedicated member of this community. A member of the Greatest Generation, M.B. served in the U.S. Army Air Corps later known as the United States Air Force as a flight navigator with the 98th bomb group in Southern Italy during World War II. M.B. returned to the states in the spring of 1945 where he and his wife of seventy-five years, Emma Cathryne Goforth, had five children, Ronnie (Melba), Mike (Sandra), Richard (Donna), Harold (Cindy), and Carole Howard Mathis (Wade). He had a number of varied careers post his military service, working as a draftsman with Mayes Howard Lumber Company, a U.S. rural mail carrier during which time he served as President of the Tennessee Rural Letter Carrier Association, and upon retirement as a Mission Service Corps Volunteer with the Brotherhood Commission in Memphis TN, a ministry of the Southern Baptist Convention. His life was devoted to serving his Lord and his family, which continued to grow through the years. M.B.’s mission work spanned the greater part of his retired life and took him across the U.S., to Haiti, Mexico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. A dedicated member of Oak Grove Baptist Church, he served in many capacities, including but not limited to, Sunday School and Discipleship Training Directors, Royal Ambassador Director, and Minister of Music. He also served at the state level as a seven year member of the Board of Directors and later Vice President of the Tennessee Baptist Convention. In addition, M.B. lead a weekly prison ministry at Fort Pillow State Penitentiary. Mr. Howard leaves his wife, Cathryne, his aforementioned children, eleven grandchildren, and nineteen (and a half) great-grandchildren. He was a devoted Christian, father, grandfather, brother, service member, and friend. M.B. was preceded in death by his parents and brother, Kieffer Howard, and daughter in law, Melba Howard. The family requests memorials be sent to Oak Grove Baptist Church, 4048 Hwy 59 West, Covington, TN.
Services for Mr. Howard will be held on Saturday, June 8th, at 2:30 PM at the Oak Grove Baptist Church. Visitation will be held from 12-2 prior to the services beginning. Interment will follow in Walton Cemetery.