Gaylon Jerome Embrey 1935-2024


On May 24, 2024, the world bid farewell to a remarkable man, Gaylon Jerome Embrey, who passed away peacefully at his home in Quitman. Born on March 16, 1935 in Mount Pleasant, Texas, Gaylon led a purpose-filled life with a profound love for his family and the Lord.

Gaylon wore many hats throughout his life – as a talented writer, preacher and beloved family man. One of the greatest joys in Gaylon’s life was his marriage to the love of his life, Ginger. He married Ginger on Aug. 22, 1956, and said that he didn’t know when she proposed to him that he was about to win the lottery, but quickly learned that he did. He also gained his first son (Ric) in the deal, a son that he loved as his own for all of his days.

Gaylon began preaching at age 16, “preaching to the cows” for practice before his first sermon at the church in Greenhill. He remarked that no cows were converted that day. His preaching led him from Mt. Pleasant, to Gladewater, to Lubbock, and finally to Quitman and Hawkins. His words and his life touched the hearts and lives of all who encountered him and left a permanent mark on their lives. He had an unwavering commitment to immersing his spirit in God’s word, and this showed as he always had the right words to provide support and comfort at life’s difficult moments.

Gaylon’s interests were also very diverse, from writing articles, books and songs (winning second place in a Billboard Magazine song writing contest), his creative spirit knew no bounds. For many years his Wood County Democrat articles titled “Objectively Speaking” ran in the community. He also had radio programs in Mount Pleasant and Lubbock. Most importantly, Gaylon shared his love for truth and his Lord, at the Church of Christ in Hawkins and Quitman from 1967 to 1994. 

He is preceded in death by his parents, Wayne Lee and Eva Byrd Embrey; wife of 64 years, Virginia “Ginger” Embrey; brother, Jerry Embrey; sister, Jeanette Thompson Goss; and grandson, Steele Justiss. His surviving loved ones include three children, Donald Richard “Ric” Justiss Jr. and wife Michelle of Mesquite, Gina Fikes and husband Perry of Quitman and Andy Embrey and wife Sharon of Lawson, Mo.; along with a good congregation of grandchildren and great-grandchildren, who knew him as “Papa G.”

Finally, a personal note from him to each of you (his special request).  

“To all my family, let me say (and I should include the Lord and dear friends here too) that I have loved each one of you as much as I could, although due to my background and unfortunate constitutional make up I was not always able through the years to say it as much or show it as well as I would have liked. In retrospect, I am very sorry for that. Please forgive me. But just know that I died an enormously blessed man and you all are the ones who made it so. For that I thank you with all my heart.”

His family respects Papa G’s request to have this read, but lovingly disagrees with his need for forgiveness in any respect.  

Funeral services for Gaylon are scheduled for 11 a.m. Saturday, June 1, 2024 at Lowe-Gardner Funerals & Cremations. Visitation will be held one hour prior, beginning at 10 a.m. Graveside service will be held at Nevills Chapel Cemetery in Mount Pleasant at 1:30 p.m.