Melvin William Mabra
Melvin William Mabra, 80, was called home to Heaven on Feb. 23, in Houston, Texas, after a valiant struggle with multiple illnesses. He was born on June 10, 1937, in Corpus Christi, Texas, to Paul Walker and Helena (Brooks) Mabra, and he was the fourth of seven children.
Melvin grew up in Corpus Christi, Texas, and graduated from Roy Miller High School in 1956. He then joined the United States Air Force and became a radar technician for F-102 fighter interceptors. He was stationed at Lowry Air Force Base in Denver, Colo., and Richards Gebaur Air Force Base in Belton, Mo.
Melvin trusted Christ for salvation as a child and early on felt God’s calling to be a pastor. While in the Air Force, God confirmed his calling, and on March 9, 1960, he was licensed to preach at the First Baptist Church, of Belton, Mo.
On New Year’s Eve of 1961, he met Caroline Carrion, and they married on Nov. 22, 1962. She was the love of his life and his constant companion and helper throughout their 55 years of marriage. They raised two children, William Keith Mabra and DeShea D’aun (Mabra) Morrow.
Melvin graduated from Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi (formerly the University of Corpus Christi) with a Bachelor of Arts Degree on Aug. 21, 1964. He then went on to seminary at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Kansas City and earned his Masters of Divinity and Masters of Religious Education degrees on May 4, 1968. He later earned a Doctorate of Ministry degree on May 21, 1994.
Melvin served in church ministry for over 50 years. He was pastor of Union Baptist Church and Little Platte Baptist Church in the Kansas City Northland, and he was ordained as a minister at Little Platte Baptist Church on Sept. 26, 1965. He also pastored Terrace Drive Baptist Church in Omaha, Neb. He went on to pastor Temple Baptist Church in Mason City, Iowa, for 17 years. He then served at Camp Branch Baptist Church in Sedalia, Mo., and then was pastor of Calvary Baptist Church and Cornerstone Baptist Church in Nevada.
Melvin is survived by his loving wife, Caroline, of Nevada; his two children, William (Claudia) Mabra of Cancun, Mexico, and DeShea (Jim) Morrow of Marinette, Wisc.; five grandchildren, Charles Mabra, Candace Mabra, Lauren Mabra, Cameron Morrow and Adrianne Morrow, who all adored their grandpa; two sisters, Judith (Donald) Pope, of Pearland, Texas, and Lois (Jim) Wiese, of Aurora, Mo.; and many nieces and nephews. The greatest desire of his life was for others to come to know the Savior he loved and served. He was preceded in death by his parents; an infant sister, Jeanette; two brothers, Kenneth and Charles Mabra; and one sister, Elissa Miller.
Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. on Friday, March 2, at Ferry Funeral Home, Nevada, with Pastor Donald Pope officiating. Interment with Military Honors will follow in National Cemetery, Fort Scott. The family will receive friends at 10 a.m. prior to the service at the funeral home.
Those who wish may contribute in Melvin’s name to the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center or Cornerstone Baptist Church in care of Ferry Funeral Home.
“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith . . .” 2 Tim. 4:7.