J. E. Blanton, age 85, of Surrency passed away Monday, August 24, 2020 at Appling Healthcare System.
Bro. Blanton was born August 16, 1935 in Surrency to the late Stephen M. “Steve” Blanton and the late Elizabeth Herndon Blanton.
Bro. Blanton trusted Jesus Christ as his personal Lord & Savior on August 16, 1952. He later married his high school sweetheart, Jean C. Knight, on June 26, 1953 and together, they went on to serve in the ministry for 66 years. His love for people and his love for Jesus motivated him to strive to be a dedicated and passionate soul-winner and pastor. He pastored Oakland Free Will Baptist Church in Whites Creek, TN while attending the Free Will Baptist College in Nashville, TN. After graduating from college, he returned to Southeast Georgia where he started four churches, including Jesup First Free Will Baptist Church. In 1968, Bro. Blanton moved to Atlanta, where he started Decatur Free Will Baptist Church and Snellville Free Will Baptist Church.
In 1996, Bro. Blanton returned home to Surrency to retire. After filling in at various churches, his retirement was cut short when God called him to reenter the pastorate ministry and to serve Riverside Baptist Church and later Zoar Baptist Church, both in Appling County. In May 2019, Bro. Blanton retired from preaching the gospel, but he continued to minister and encourage everyone he saw and everyone he could talk to on the phone.
Survivors include his wife of 67 years, Jean Knight Blanton of Surrency; daughter, Deborah Blanton of Ponte Vedra Beach, FL; son & daughter-in-law, Steve & Shannon Blanton of Spartanburg, SC; sisters, Kathleen Overstreet of Surrency and Naomi McQuaig of Alma; brother & sister-in-law, Jerry & Linda Blanton of Surrency; and grandchildren, Daniel Miltenberger of Jacksonville, FL, Chloe Miltenberger of Tampa, FL, and Colt Blanton of Spartanburg, SC. Several nieces and nephews also survive.
A private family funeral service will be held Friday, August 28, 2020 at 11:00 a.m. at Mt Vernon Baptist Church with Rev. Justin McLellan, Rev. Darrell Quinn & Rev. Rick Brown officiating and eulogies by Steve Blanton and Daniel Miltenberger. Interment will be in Memorial Free Will Baptist Church Cemetery.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the funeral service will be private, for family only. However, the service will be livestreamed on the Facebook page of Mt Vernon Baptist Church Baxley, GA.
Active pallbearers will be Daniel Miltenberger, Colt Blanton, Douglas Snead, David Snead, Jim McQuaig, Donnie Head, & Thomas Dubberly.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial contributions to a church or charity that’s doing God’s work.
Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Swain Funeral Home.
To send flowers to J. E. Blanton's family, please visit our floral store.