August 30, 1931- March 28, 2017 aged 85 years 7 months
Memorial services were held for Mr. Meade Dowell Sterrett Jr., 85, of Jefferson, Texas 3:00 P.M. Sunday April 2, 2017, at First Baptist Church with Dr. Jeff Taylor and Paul Tapp officiating. Visitation was from 2-3 P.M. in the Fellowship Hall of the church prior to service. Arrangements were made under the direction of Haggard Funeral Home. A reception followed the service in the Fellowship Hall.
Meade Dowell Sterrett Jr. finished his long earthly journey and went to be with the Lord on Tuesday, March 28, 2017. Dowell was in his home in Jefferson with Sylvia, his beloved wife of nearly 62 years. Meade Dowell Sterrett Jr. was born August 30, 1931 in Jefferson, TX. The oldest child of Meade and Mae Sterrett. Dowell is survived by his wife Sylvia Dunlap Sterrett, brother Robert Sterrett and wife Betty Sterrett of Longview. Sons Bobby Sterrett and wife Cheryl of Kennard, Donny Sterrett and Kathleen Carter of Jefferson. Grandchildren, Jarrod Sterrett and Lesa West of Conroe, James Sterrett and wife Ashley of Denton, Chelci Sterrett Barkley and husband Jarred of Tomball, Catherine Sterrett Williamson and husband Joshua of Longview, and Nathaniel Elliott Sterrett of Keithville, LA. Nephews Russell Sterrett and wife Shuneda of Longview and Randall Sterrett and wife Paula of Dallas.
Dowell graduated from Jefferson High School. He played the french horn in the marching band and represented Jefferson at Texas Boys State in Austin, Texas his junior year. While in high school he served as a medic in the National Guard. Dowell joined the United States Navy after graduation from Jefferson High School and served on an aircraft carrier in the Korean War. Following his military servce, Dowell attended East Texas Baptist College where he met Sylvia. He worked in Longhorn Army Ammunition Plant as a firefighter and paramedic.
Dowell was a lifelong member of the First Baptist Church in Jefferson. He was ordained as a deacon in 1959 at age 28 and faithfully served Our Lord and Savior. Dowell enjoyed singing in the choir. He served as Sunday School teacher, superintendent, founder and president of the church’s Men’s Brotherhood. Dowell faithfully attended and served the local Gideons, distributing Bibles everywhere he went; hospitals, businesses and home health care workers.
Dowell was an avid supporter of the Boy Scouts of America, serving as Scoutmaster of Troop 222. He was honored with the Silver Beaver award by East Texas Area Council. Over 12 Scouts earned their Eagle while he was scoutmaster. Both of his sons and two of his grandsons also earned the Eagle rank.
Dowell was on the Oakwood Cemetery Association Board, and Trustee for the First Baptist Church.
Dowell was a 62-year member of the Jefferson Masonic Lodge #38 AF&AM. He became active in the lodge after retirement serving in all the chairs and W.M. in 2003-4, District Deputy 2004-5, and secretary. A 33rd Degree Mason, Dowell was a member of the Shrine and York Rite. He was honored by Lodge #38 with the Golden Trowel Award in 2008. Both his sons and his two oldest grandsons are Master Masons as well.
Although most widely known as Pappy, Dowell was called Meade by grade school classmates, and Dangerous Dal by Scouts and Scouters because of his campaign hat.
Dowell was caring and understanding, telephoning a list of friends and family each week even in the midst of his own illness.
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