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Shining the Light of Christ
Matthew 5:16

Reflections: Remembering the Rev. Dr. Jack Hester

Written by Karen Brewer, Publisher

A photograph I took of the Rev. Dr. Jack Hester and his wife, Shirley, at the Conestee Coming Home Crusade in April of 2015.

February 18 marked the fourth anniversary of the celebration of life service, at Pickens First Baptist Church, honoring the life of the Rev. Dr. Jack Hester, who had passed away on Sunday morning, February 14, 2016, while preparing to leave to go preach at Hillside Baptist Church, where he served as the interim Pastor.

He served God in the ministry for more than six decades, and his precious wife, Shirley, was right by his side all of those years. What a wonderful couple. 

He was the interim Pastor at my late grandmother’s church at the time of her passing, and he was a distant cousin to my late grandmother, having the same Hester ancestors. 

I was blessed each time I heard him preach, and I remember him asking me on several occasions, “Did you bring your camera?” He would want me to take photographs, and I am so glad I did, to look back on those treasured times to remember.

I will remember him in many ways, including for his sense of humor, and also as being a kind person and an encouraging person and a godly Christian.

When he gave me a copy of his book, My Story For His Glory: From Baseball to the Bible, From the Mill Hill to Calvary’s Hill, he wrote these words inside the front cover: “To: Karen Brewer, a great friend who writes my story for His glory. 04/09/14.  Jack W. Hester. Jeremiah 33:3.”

He has been missed these past four years, but his family and Christian friends look forward to a reunion one day in heaven.

What a legacy he leaves in the life he led for his Saviour.

A photograph I took of Rev. H.C. Couch and Jack Hester on July 13, 2014. Preacher Couch was my late grandparents' Pastor (beginning in 2002 until he retired) and is also highly respected by our family. 

A photograph I took of Rev. H.C. and Shelba Couch and Dr. Jack and Shirley Hester on July 13, 2014 at City View First Baptist Church in Greenville, South Carolina. Dr. Hester preached in the service that evening, and Shelba Couch played the piano. It was the first time in 16 months that Shelba, battling cancer,  had played publicly. She passed away nine months later, on April 10, 2015, and is very much missed. Both of these dear couples are highly thought of by our family.

A photograph I took of Jack Hester with Joe Anders at Jack and Shirley Hester's Circle of Friends Celebration on January 12, 2014 at City View First Baptist Church. Joe and Jack were good friends and had played baseball against each other in their younger years. I met Joe and his precious wife, Kate, in 1999, when I interviewed them for a story I wrote on 'Shoeless' Joe Jackson, and I also later wrote stories on Joe. Joe and Kate were such a wonderful couple, and they became dear friends. Sadly, Kate passed away in March of 2004, the same week as my uncle Joe Frank, and Joe passed away in November of 2015. Jack helped conduct Joe's funeral service at Easley First Baptist Church, only three months before Jack, himself, passed away. Joe and Kate are also missed. I found out that Joe and I were distant cousins, on my maternal grandmother's side, having the same Fisher ancestors from Transylvania County, North Carolina.

A photograph I took of Jack Hester with evangelist David Ring on March 23, 2014. Ring preached in the service that evening at City View First Baptist Church and is holding a copy of Jack's book about his life, entitled My Story For His Glory.

A photograph I took on August 2, 2015 of Jack Hester preaching at Powdersville First Baptist Church, where he once served as Pastor. Jack and Shirley celebrated 65 years in the ministry with a special service that evening, where he preached and she sang.

Many more photographs may be viewed by clicking on the links above.