Delcy Merritt Sr.

Published 12:00 am Saturday, October 9, 2010

VIDALIA — Services for Delcy R. Merritt Sr., 84, of Vidalia, who died Thursday, Oct. 7, 2010, at Promise Hospital of Miss-Lou in Vidalia, will be at 11 a.m. today at Vidalia First Baptist Church.

Burial will follow at Greenlawn Memorial Park Cemetery under the direction of Laird Funeral Home.

Visitation will be from 10 a.m. until service time today at the church.

Mr. Merritt was born Jan. 30, 1926, at the Bude Logging Camp in Franklin County, the son of Edd Merritt and Berniece Pevey Merritt. He grew up there and in Adams County. He was drafted in 1944 at the age of 18. His 19th birthday found him on the frozen battlefields of Germany acting as a field sergeant in a unit that would receive a Presidential Unit Citation for gallantry in action. Shortly thereafter, he suffered a debilitating wound and was shipped to Northington Hospital in Tuscaloosa, Ala. For the events leading up to this, he received a Purple Heart and the Silver Star. At home in Natchez, on leave from extensive rehabilitation, he met and married the love of his life, Dulcie Ruth Geter.

A number of people remember him as the owner of Merritt Refrigeration who serviced his customers in the Natchez area faithfully and fairly. Yet a number of others will remember him as the friendly electrician at Armstrong Tire and Rubber Company from which he retired in the early 1980s. Most will remember him as the kind-hearted Christian man known to everyone affectionately as “Poppa.”

He was preceded in death by his parents; three brothers, Edward, Vernon and Sidney; four sisters, Leona McGehee, Hilda DeLaughter, Evelyn Sant and Edna Laura Wright; and one grandson, Stan Bland Jr.

Survivors include his devoted wife of 65 years, Dulcie Ruth Merritt; five daughters, Dorothy Brown and Millard of Tylertown, Gloria Bland and husband, Stanley, of Natchez, Dianna Walker and husband, Rick, of Junction City, Ark., Elaine Daniels and husband, Wardy, and Janice Turnage and husband, Donnie, all of Vidalia; two sons, Delcy Jr. “Buddy” of Sterlington, La. and Cliff Merritt and wife, Debra, of Vidalia; 22 grandchildren, Mickey Brown, Aileen Baughtman, Liz Davidson, Chris Walker, Russ Walker, Clint Daniels, Peggy Daniels, Jack Goodman, Mandy Wisner, Kristi Mehrens, Laura Nelson, Charles Turnage, Dawn Dorr, Cody Turnage, Matt Merritt, Amber Horner, Brandi Rouse, Will Merritt, Amos Merritt, Hannah Merritt, Katie Merritt, Jessie Merritt and 14 of their spouses; 45 great-grandchildren; and 14 great-great-grandchildren.

Pallbearers will be sons, grandsons and great-grandsons.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Delta Bank Relay for Life Team in Vidalia or to a charity of choice.

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