Jerry “Don” Stivers, Sr., 63, of Mabelvale, Arkansas, passed away on September 2, 2021. He was born June 22, 1958 in Lonoke, Arkansas to the late John and Ollie Mae Stivers.
Don married his life love, Rhoda Odum, who he loved dearly, on June 29, 2002. He would greet her daily with “good morning, sunshine” and “sweetheart” was his customary endearment for her.
He served in the Army National Guard form 1976-78. Don received an honorable discharge after receiving injuries while heroically saving the life of a buddy from a fire while on a camping trip.
Don drove big rigs across the country and back for 20 years to support his young family, Jerry, Josh and Sarah, who were his life. He worked on the dock at Arkansas Best Freight when he married Rhoda and retired early to concentrate his energy on his business, Central Arkansas Lawn Maintenance, but mainly to be flexible to spend time with the “son of his old age”, Isaac.
Don’s life forever changed in November 1998 when he walked into Word Aflame Fellowship and gave his life to God. When God filled him with the Holy Ghost and he was baptized in Jesus’ name, he never looked back to his old life. Don’s new life consisted of driving the church van, ushering, singing with the praise team, keeping the church lawn mowed, and of course he wanted to make sure he arrived early enough on Sunday mornings to enjoy a coffee and donut with his friends in the coffee shop.
Besides his deep love for his God, Don had a passion for the deer woods. Not just to hunt for himself, but to connect with his family and friends on a personal level. He considered this his ministry.
Along with his parents, he is preceded in death by his sisters, Maxine Ellison, Veda Goode, and Ruth Reed.
He is survived by his wife, Rhoda Stivers; children, Jerry Don Stivers, Jr. (Bess) of Pearcy, Arkansas, Joshua Dee Franklin Stivers (Heather) of Haskell, Arkansas, Sarah Beth Stivers of Benton, Arkansas, Isaac James Stivers of Mabelvale; grandchildren, Heather, Luke, Wesley (Gloria), Abigail, Gabriella, Derrek, Joseph, Katelyn, Brody, Chance, and Ivee; siblings, Ruby Wagner, John Stivers (Julie), Mary Johnson (Richard), Shirley Harker, Ricky Stivers, Tammy Pounds, Lisa Rhoades (Randy); along with numerous nieces and nephews.
A funeral will be held at 12:00PM on Thursday, September 9, 2021 at Word Aflame Church in Little Rock, Arkansas. A visitation will be held prior to the service beginning at 10:00AM at the church. There will be a private family burial at Concord Cemetery in Furlow, Arkansas.