Ed Hewlett, Sr.
Dr. Ed Hewlett, Sr., went to be with the Lord on Friday, October 17, 2014. As a Southern Baptist minister for over 70 years he served churches in Kentucky, Missouri, and New York. He was 102 years old at the time of his death in Clarence, NY, where he had been living following the death of his wife in 2011, cared for by his son, Dr. Ed Hewlett, Jr.
Dr. Hewlett was the third of four children born to R.G. & Julia Hewlett in Colt, AR, on January 3, 1912. After his mother’s death when he was eight years old, he was reared by his aunt and uncle, Dr. & Mrs. L.F. Ferguson in Greenwood, MS. God called him into the gospel ministry while he was a student at Mississippi College. He received his Master of Divinity degree at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY.
While serving as a young pastor at Seven Hills Baptist Church in Owensboro, KY, Dr. Hewlett met and married Mildred Robertson, an accomplished musician, in 1937. Their marriage of 73 years was a partnership of service and ministry in the Lord. They are survived by three children, Sally Taylor (Paul) of Portland, OR; Ed, Jr. (Margie Patterson) of Clarence, NY; and Janie Winscott (Jack, deceased) of Prentiss, MS; nine grandchildren; twenty great grandchildren located in NY, MS, MO, CA, WA, OR & TN.
In 1944 Dr. Hewlett moved his family from his pastorate at First Baptist Church, Richmond, KY, to St. Louis, MO to educate his deaf daughter Sally at Central Institute for the Deaf. He accepted the pastorate of Southwest Baptist Church where he served for 37 years, a period when the church baptized over 1,000 people and increased their property and buildings through a $1.25 million building program. When the existing sanctuary was destroyed by fire in 1957, Dr. Hewlett led the church to build a 700-seat facility.
During his tenure in St. Louis, Dr. Hewlett served as moderator of the St. Louis Baptist Association, a member of the Missouri Baptist Convention Board, and a trustee on both the Foreign Mission Board (IMB) and the New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. In 1976 he spearheaded a drive to save Missouri Baptist College which was facing closure from lack of funds. He recruited local Baptist churches to donate 1% of their contributions to help fund the reopening of the college.
Dr. Hewlett retired from his St. Louis ministry in 1979. Working with the Mission Service Corps, the Hewletts moved to Rochester, NY, where they established Browncroft Baptist Church which he pastored until 2001, continuing to preach even after he was 100 years old. He was active in the New York Baptist Convention, serving as its president. In 2013 Dr. Hewlett attended Homecoming at Mississippi College as the oldest alumnus at almost 102 years of age.
Family and friends will gather at Southwest Baptist Church in St. Louis in the summer of 2015 to celebrate the life and ministry of Dr. Ed Hewlett. Burial will be at Clear Creek Baptist Church, Oxford, MS, the church founded by his great uncle, Rev. R.G. Hewlett in 1836. Memorial gifts may be made to Gideons International or Browncroft Baptist Church, 420 N. Winton Road, Rochester, NY 14610.