John Douglas memorial sing set

The life of John Wilbur Douglas — “a true Southern Gospel music fan” — will be celebrated on Oct. 11 during a memorial sing at Broadway Church of the Nazarene in Parkersburg.

Douglas, pastor of River Valley Community Church/the One Church in Vienna, passed away on Dec. 3, 2018 during open heart surgery, said his wife, Sue. He was 64 years old.

John Douglas always said he wanted a gospel concert for his funeral, Sue said. A concert could not be put together quickly at the time of his death in December, however, she said.

While attending Parkersburg South High School, where he graduated in 1973, Douglas sang with the Pathways group. He later sang with the Harvest Trio and most recently with Southern Gospel group DaySpring, which was formed in 2008.

DaySpring, with members Sue Douglas, John’s brother Mike, sister-in-law Helen and Joe Halbert as pianist, will perform at John’s memorial sing. The Guardians will be featured at the memorial sing.

According to The Guardians’ website, “Their collective mission is to share the gospel of Jesus Christ and sing songs that minister to people’s hearts and touch their lives. Founded in 1988, The Guardians’ music impacts listeners with their sincerity and commitment to glorifying the Savior they sing about.”

An article about DaySpring in the March 2019 edition of Singing News magazine included a comment from John Douglas. Singing News, based in Nashville, bills itself as “The Printed Voice of Southern Gospel Music.”

The free memorial sing in October — the month John Douglas was born — begins at 7 p.m. at Broadway Church of the Nazarene, 901 Broadway Ave.

John had been the pastor of River Valley Community Church/the One Church since 1996. He was the former pastor and church planter of the Fellowship Church of the Nazarene and Fellowship Christian Academy in Reedsville, Ohio. John also worked at DuPont for 19 years and was a football star at Parkersburg South High School.


Proceeds from the 20th annual Carr K. Leavitt Memorial Golf Tournament on Aug. 24 will go to the Hope Recovery Manor that is being developed to help women in Parkersburg.

After funding is secured, the manor at 1016 Market St. will provide housing and programs for women who are recovering from substance abuse.

Priscilla Leavitt, Carr’s widow, developed the manor plan as a member of the Junior League of Parkersburg.

Leavitt Funeral Home is once again sponsoring this golf tournament, which has raised money for local organizations and programs that help to improve the quality of life for residents in this community, Stephen Leavitt said.

Donations for door prizes, sponsors for the four-person scramble and teams are needed for the August event at the Golf Club of West Virginia in Waverly. A hole sponsorship is $150 and entry fees are $65 a person.

Registration starts at 8:30 a.m. and tee time is 9 a.m. Breakfast and lunch will be provided.

Plans call for cash prizes for first, second and third places, door prizes and skill prizes.

Call 304-422-6459 to register or go to website leavittfuneralhome.com.

Priscilla Leavitt said Hope Recovery Manor is attempting to obtain a nonprofit status so it can apply for grants. Proceeds from the golf tournament will be used for job skill training for women staying at the manor, she said.


The fifth annual St. Joseph’s Hospital employees picnic will be 4-8 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 1 at the main shelter in Parkersburg’s Southwood Park.

Event organizer Carolyn Cunningham said she wants to share the many photographs from St. Joseph’s Hospital events she has obtained. Cunningham worked as a nurse for 48 years at St. Joseph’s Hospital.

The former employees are asked to bring a covered dish and lawn chairs. Dinnerware will be provided.

St. Joseph’s Hospital opened in 1900 and closed in 2014 as the St. Joseph’s Campus of Camden Clark Medical Center.

Contact Paul LaPann at plapann@newsandsentinel.com