Rev. Emory Ray Thacker, born October 20, 1937, Wise, Virginia, went home to be with the Lord peacefully, October 2, 2023, surrounded by his family, from Septic Shock, at St.John’s Hospital, Maplewood, MN.
A strong patriotic and humanitarian who came from a long line of frontiersmen who defended the rocky,treeless ridge, known as King’s Mountain during the American Revolution. The patriots charged many times with accurate marksmanship. These irregularities defeated the Tories under Colonel Campbell.
Home, on Thacker’s Branch, he often said, “ was a place where you had to look straight up to see out and a house that NEVER saw a drop of paint.”
In his youth he suffered from “Soft Bones”, so this handsome, curly, blond, headed, fragile boy found walking to school a hardship. The bus, IF, it worked, often also found it’self sideways in a mammoth hole! Then unload for the long walk home.
His most memorable days were when the missionaries came to the school and give out “testaments.” He knew grand ma would read it to him that night by lamp after the chores were done. The same grandma whom he often walked with (3) miles to church on Sundays, “if” they both felt able.
He enjoyed wildlife, pheasant and squirrel hunting, talking about his 55 Chevy, target shooting, sanding, a fair mechanic, avid bee keeper, dabbling wood worker, farming, gardening, canning, cooking and fishing. All keepers were dinner. A born chef he could seemly whip up a delicious meal, (the number never mattered), with mouth watering pastries effortlessly. Biscuits. pies, spareribs and known for his chille.
Emory left Wise when he was sixteen for the state of Maryland searching for opportunities and a better life. Truck driving became his career. Driving 25 years beginning as the friendly milkman for Eagle Nest Diary, Annapolis, MD,. From there he moved ANYTHING ANYWHERE.until becoming an over the road driver. April 17,1981, as an employee for C. H. Transportation, he was shot down in cold blood on a street in Dallas, Texas, in the back and right side of face with a (12) gauge shotgun at (12) foot distance. He refused to get into a Monte Carlo with (3) criminals. The shooter was in the back. He turned and walked away. Emory lived (42) years with these injuries with no captures, arrests, compensation, or closure. He later forgave them.
In the 1990’s Emory graduated from National Seminary., T. L. Lowry, Fort Washington, Maryland, and soon afterwards co-founded Appalachian Ministries Inc. and began spreading the gospel and ministering to the families
in the mining area. He served there for about 22 years.
He met and knew Cathy Mattea, before she became famous, read Tom Clancy’s manuscript of THE HUNT FOR RED OCTOBER before it was published, and George C. Scott was a relative by marriage.
This reserved man, was devoted to his family, and preceded in death by his mother Tina Mae Thacker. Survived by his loving wife of 33 years, step son whom he loved as his own, his wife Crystal, grandson Dominic Barnett, who so generously gave medical equipment, Joseph and Jacob Masuga, who called him grandpa and made sure he had his favorite homemade bologna, and a host of other dedicated friends and prayer warriors and partners. His inspirational perseverance was a light for others. His passing will leave a void but we find peace in knowing he looked forward to going home.
Burial was private. Contributions may be made to your favorite charity.
Psalm 41:1 “Blessed is he who considers the poor! The Lord delivers him in the day of trouble.”