Dr. Harold Lee Anderson, 87, a Minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, departed this life peacefully on September 12, 2017, surrounded by family.
Harold's crowning achievement in life was winning the hand of Opal Keys in marriage in 1953. Opal preceded him in death. Together they raised six children and were blessed with nineteen grandchildren. Six great grandchildren also survive "Papa". Harold and Opal traveled the world together leading groups of Christian pilgrims to the Holy Land, as well as destinations around the globe. They were recognized as "Family of the Year" by the Family Guidance Center in 1994.
He is also preceded in death by his parents J. Lee and Clara Carpenter Anderson and two brothers, Robert Donald Anderson and W. Gerald Anderson. He is survived by a sister Betty A. Gibbons and sister-in-law Carol Pinkston Anderson.
Surviving children are Hon. James Anderson (Karen), of Montgomery; Susan Wren (Greg) of Montgomery; Ralph Anderson (Sally) of Brandenburg, Kentucky; Charlie Anderson (Linda) of Montgomery; Martha DeWitt of Louisville, Kentucky; and Joy Jager (Jim) of Birmingham. Surviving grandchildren are Jesse Anderson (Lacy), Marjorie Kirkland (Kale), Anna Anderson, Rachael Lindmark (Peter), Christa Wasserman (Zach), Catherine Roberts (Dustin), Tom Anderson, Brian C. Anderson, Roscoe Anderson, Charlie Anderson, Jr., Sterling Anderson, Brian M. Anderson, Jacob DeWitt, Joy Beth DeWitt, Hannah DeWitt, Rosemary Spooner (Stuart), Ruthie Jager, Caroline Jager and Gin Jager. Great grandchildren are Benjamin, Catherine and John Lindmark; Emsley and Truitt Roberts; and Anderson James Wasserman. Daughter-in-law Susan Blalock Anderson and son-in-law Michael Kent DeWitt preceded him in death.
A native of Montgomery, Alabama, Dr. Anderson was born April 10, 1930. He graduated from Sidney Lanier High School in 1948. He received his undergraduate degree from Howard College (now Samford University) in 1951 and Master of Divinity from the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, in 1954. He would later earn the Doctor of Ministries from Luther Rice Seminary in 1987. He was first ordained as a minister in 1948 while still in high school and served as the first Pastor of Pinedale Baptist Church.
Dr. Anderson was an Associate Pastor at Southside Baptist Church, Birmingham, while in college, and was Pastor of Kuttawa Baptist Church, Kuttawa, Kentucky, while in seminary. Upon completion of seminary education, he served as Pastor of Glenwood Baptist Church, Nashville, Tennessee, until he accepted a position with the Alabama Baptist Convention State Board of Missions in Montgomery in 1957. He remained with the State Board of Missions in various leadership ministries until his retirement in 1995.
In retirement, Dr. Anderson remained active in preaching, teaching, ministry, and service both in church and the community. He was a member of Ridgecrest Baptist Church for fifty years and First Baptist Church, Montgomery, from 2007 until his death. He was former board chairman of the South YMCA and was president of the PTA at both Floyd School and Sidney Lanier High School. He was an active and serving member of the Montgomery Lions Club for over 30 years and was named "Lion of the Year" in 2005.
Visitation will be Friday, September 15 from 5-7 p.m. at Leak Memory Funeral Home. The family will also receive friends an hour before funeral services which will be held in the Stakely Sanctuary at First Baptist Church on Saturday, September 16 at 11:00 a.m. with Dr. Jay Wolf officiating.
Grandsons will serve as pall bearers.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to:
Opal Anderson Memorial Scholarship Fund
c/o The Baptist Health Care Foundation
P.O. Box 241647
Montgomery AL 36124-1647