James Lorenza Coker, 82 of Pocahontas, passed away May 13. He served in the Vietnam war and excelled in his military service. After returning from Vietnam, he became a Criminal Investigation Division (CID) agent for the US Army. After leaving the military, he worked as corporate security director for several years until the day God called him into ministry in 1975. He attended Criswell Bible College in Dallas and Central Baptist College in Conway and was ordained on Sept. 17, 1976, by Richmond Road Baptist Church in Texarkana.
Bro. Coker served as interim pastor at Hillcrest Baptist Church in Texarkana during the summer of 1976 before accepting the pastorate of Sardis Baptist Church in Waxahachie, Texas. He moved back to Arkansas to pastor Lemonwood Baptist Church in Pine Bluff and then planted Pocahontas Baptist Church as an Arkansas state missionary in 1984. When the church organized, he served as pastor there for 25 years until he resigned due to his declining health in 2009. He continued to serve as pastor emeritus until his death.
James married Louise Tidwell Coker on Dec. 18, 1965, in Waxahachie, Texas. They were married for almost 58 years.
He is also survived by a daughter, Tracy (Randy) Gholson; three grandchildren; and a brother, Larry (Lynn) Coker. He is also survived by his son in faith, Randy Lingenfelter.
Visitation will be held Thursday, May 18, from 6-8 p.m. in the Chapel of McNabb Funeral Home (2129 Park St., Pocahontas, Ark. 72455). Funeral service will be Friday, May 19, at 10 a.m. at Pocahontas Baptist Church, 2719 Thomasville Rd., Pocahontas, Ark. 72455) with Randy Lingenfelter officiating. Burial will follow in Hope Cemetery under the direction of McNabb Funeral Home (mcnabbfh.com).