T.J. "Jerry" Lunsford, 77, of Carlsbad, passed away Saturday, April 6, 2013, peacefully at his home, surrounded by his family.
A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday, April 10, 2013, at Denton Wood Funeral Home with Chaplain Terry McKean officiating. Carlsbad Veterans Honor Guard will provide military honors. Denton-Wood Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.
Jerry was born to Elbert M. and Evadine (Rasmussen) Lunsford on Jan. 23, 1936, in Otis, New Mexico. He married Bobbie Faye Pryor July 9, 1959, at the home of J.C. and Juanell Lunsford. Jerry proudly served in the U.S. Navy
, as fireman, on the Destroyer USS Owen from 1954 to 1958. He then worked at Carlsbad Fordtown, Lunsford Plumbing, Carlsbad Irrigation District, and several construction companies as a heavy equipment operator. He was also self-employed as a home rental owner.
Jerry was very devoted husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather. He loved his family deeply, and his family loved and adored him. Jerry loved the Lord and was a member of the Church of Christ. He enjoyed his home, family gatherings, and watching "Gunsmoke," "The Rifleman" and "Bonanza." He always looked forward to early morning coffee at the North "Y" restaurant with his many friends, and he would say that many of the world's problems were solved there. Jerry was gifted with a wonderful sense of humor and generous, tender heart. He loved to tell corny jokes. Jerry especially enjoyed visiting with Danny Fowler on the front porch, where they would often tell the same jokes over and over. He visited Lakeview Christian Home frequently and brought treats to the residents. Jerry helped many elderly friends by bringing meals to their homes and taking them to doctor's appointments. He was always cheerful and happy, and faced his illness with optimism and great strength.
He was preceded in death by his precious granddaughter, Holly Barnes; his parents; his brothers: J.C. Lunsford and Robert "Bob" Lunsford; and his sisters: Naomi "Irene" Lunsford Gaines, Pearly "Christine" Lunsford Clutts, Doris Marie Lunsford Goforth and June Lunsford Burgin.
He is survived by his wife of the home, Bobbie Faye Lunsford; daughters: Vicki Richey and husband, Tommy, and Tammy Harris and husband, Dale; grandson, Cody Harris; granddaughters: Kimberly Harris and Amy Richey Fierro; great-grandchildren: Lily Harris and Ethen Fierro; sister, Florene Lunsford Kanto; sisters-in-law: Juanell Lunsford, Mary Ann Pryor Hedges and Betty Pryor Hurst; brothers-in-law: Jimmy Burgin and Johnny Lee Pryor; and many nieces and nephews.
Jerry became known as "Papa" when his first grandchild, Holly, began talking, giving him that special name. His family knew he was always there for them and they were loved unconditionally by him. We will grieve his absence until we are all together again in Heaven. We are joyful for him that he is now with Jesus and reunited with his loved ones who are in Heaven. We love you Papa.
Honorary pallbearers are Lowell Lunsford, Ivan Lunsford and Jerry's North Y Coffee Buddies.
Should friends desire to make memorial contributions, they may be made to Lakeview Christian Home Hospice, 1300 N. Canal St., Carlsbad, New Mexico 88220. Condolences may be expressed at dentonwood.com.