Wallace Parham

Wallace Edward Parham, 92, of Winston-Salem, N.C., passed away Sunday, June 15, 2014, at Brookridge Retirement Community. He was born June 14, 1922, in Asheville, N.C. to Carter and Myrtle Parham. Both parents preceded him in death as did his only sister, Peggy Compton. In 1940 he graduated from Lee Edwards High School in Asheville. Following two years at Mars Hill Junior College, he entered Wake Forest College (now University) graduating with Phi Beta Kappa and Omicron Delta Kappa honors. Three years later he received a Master of Theology degree from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, Kentucky where he met his wife of 67 years, Doris Neeley. Thus began a ministry of 42 years in the fields of Christian Education and Church Administration. He served in a number of strategic churches in the Southern Baptist Convention such as the First Baptist Churches of Roanoke, Va., Richmond, Va., Greenville, S.C., Oklahoma City, Okla., and Chattanooga; Main Street Baptist, Hattiesburg, Miss.; and Hayes Barton Baptist of Raleigh. During his career he worked with important Baptist theologians such as Dr. Theodore Adams and Dr. Herschel Hobbs, author of the Baptist Faith and Message. He was also one of the early pioneers of Sunday School literature. He and Dr. Hobbs produced a great deal of it on a regular basis for the Sunday school board of the Southern Baptist Convention. He was a member, and president, of the Eastern Baptist Religious Education Association and a charter member, and president, of the Metropolitan Baptist Religious Education Association. In 1977 he received the Alumnus of the Year Award from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. He served as Visiting Professor of Religious Education at Oklahoma Baptist University from 1965-67. He was also active in civic organizations, including Civitan, Lions, and Kiwanis Clubs. He served on the National Kidney Disease Foundation and was president of the Richmond chapter. He served as a member of the Ministerial Alumni Council at Wake Forest when the decision to begin a Divinity School was initiated. He was, also, chairman of the Bicentennial-Sesquicentennial Committee of the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina. He was a strong supporter of moderate Baptists and was influential in the creation of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship. In addition to his family and church work, he had two primary interests, among others. One was his growing of roses. During the 20 years he and Doris lived in Chattanooga, he became a dedicated rosarian, not for show purposes but to share his beautiful roses with friends, especially the sick and elderly. He was a member of the local Rose Society. His other interest was travel, which began with attending meetings of the Baptist World Alliance in various places over the world. Altogether, he organized and conducted groups to eight BWA gatherings and three other groups to Europe and the Middle East. In addition to these trips, he and his late close friend, Dr. Elmo Scoggin of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, organized and directed an annual Bible study tour to Israel for approximately twenty years. This project was directed toward the training and development of seminary students. Finally, he was a lifelong supporter of Wake Forest athletics and attended all home football games and many basketball games during his years living in Winston-Salem. The highlight for him was being able to attend the Demon Deacons' appearance in the 2007 Orange Bowl game. In 1999 he and Doris moved from Chattanooga to Winston-Salem to be closer to family. They have since been a part of the Brookridge Retirement Community. Surviving family members, in addition to Doris, are son, David Parham, of Washington, D.C.; daughter, Carole Wilson and husband, Brad, of Raleigh; son, Stephen Parham and wife, Jill, of Columbia, S.C.; daughter, Lynn Stockard and husband, Chuck, of Greensboro; and seven grandchildren, Anne Wilson Kratz and husband, Rob, of Raleigh; Alex Wilson and wife, Mary Elizabeth, of Raleigh; Maggie Brown, of Charlotte; Evan Brown, of Greensboro; Caroline Parham, of New Bern; and Carter Parham and Lilly Parham, of Columbia, S.C. A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, June 18, 2014, at Knollwood Baptist Church with Dr. Kenneth Meyers and Rev. Chris Norman officiating. The family will receive friends following the service at the church. Memorial donations may be made to any local American Red Cross Chapter or a charity of the donor's choice. Online condolences may be made through www.salemfh.com.

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