Mississippi College

MC Leaders Mourn Loss of Trustee Dr. Landrum Leavell II

September 30, 2008

Funeral services will be Tuesday (Sept. 30) for the late Dr. Landrum Leavell II, president emeritus of the New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and a Mississippi College trustee.

Leavell, 81, died Friday in his hometown of Wichita Falls, Texas. He served as president of New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary from 1975 until Dec. 31, 1994 and for another year as interim president.

"By any standard of measurement Dr. Leavell is one of the greatest presidents that this seminary ever had," said current president Dr. Chuck Kelley.

A native of Ripley, Tenn., he served as a pastor for 27 years, beginning at First Baptist Church in Magnolia, Miss. from 1948 until 1951. He served as pastor at First Baptist Church in Gulfport from 1956 until 1963. He was president of the Baptist General Convention of Texas from 1971 until 1973.

Leavell has been the author or contributor to 14 books. He also pastored churches in Crosby and Charleston in Mississippi.

MC leaders say Leavell, who served on the board of trustees of the Baptist college since his retirement, will be greatly missed.

"Dr. Leavell was a great Baptist leader, a true friend of Mississippi College and we all mourn his passing," said MC President Lee Royce.

Funeral services for Leavell are Tuesday Sept. 30 at First Baptist Church in Wichita Falls, Texas. Burial is at Oak Hill Cemetery in Newman, Georgia.

Besides his long career as a man of faith, Dr. Leavell enjoyed quail hunting and faithfully attending his sons' football and basketball games. He is a graduate of Mercer University with a degree in English. He received a bachelor of divinity degree and doctorate in theology from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary.

Survivors include his wife of 55 years, JoAnn Paris Leavell. Several of his children are Mississippi College graduates. His daughter-in-law Lisa Leavell, works in the admissions office at MC.

MC trustees, President Royce and other school leaders were attending a retreat in Alabama Friday when they learned of his passing in Texas.

Dr. Leavell "was an outstanding theological educator," said Dr. Edward McMillan, a retired MC vice president for graduate studies and a former history professor. "He was a very successful pastor. He was known all over the South as a very effective Baptist leader."

McMillan knew several of his children when they attended the Baptist college in Clinton and said they were outstanding students.

Memorials can be sent to New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary or to "The Level the Mountain Campaign" at First Baptist Church in Wichita Falls, Texas.

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