Boone Lawrence Douthitt
Boone Lawrence Douthitt (1899-1989)
When Boone Douthitt was a little boy Theodore Roosevelt was President of the United States. Henry Cabot Lodge said of that great President "He had that great simplicity of manner and mode of life which is the crowning of the highest culture and the finest nature." I can say Boone Douthitt had the same!
My dear friend, Boone Douthitt, an excellent preacher of the gospel, died September 24, 1989 in the home of his daughter, Fanajo, and her husband, Coy Porter. He had been living with them five years. Coy said concerning Fanajo's care of her father,in a recent letter to me, "She cared for him in every way for months."
Several years ago I wrote a story about brother Douthitt and published it in The World Evangelist. I rejoice that by doing so I gave him "some flowers while he could smell them!"
Boone was one of the eight children of Lawrence and Allie Matlock Douthitt. He was born January 14, 1899 near Lynnville, south of Mayfield in Graves County, KY. He had two brothers who were preachers. They were Ira and Cecil. Of the eight children of Lawrence and Allie, only one is living, Vada Grogan of Murray, KY.
Boone married Mellie Ghent, July 26, 1918. She was a lovely Christian lady. She was a great helper in Boone's work of preaching the gospel. Their daughter, Fanajo, was their only child. Her husband, Coy Porter, is a gospel preacher, and the son of a gospel preacher, the beloved Rue Porter who died several years ago. Coy and Fanajo have three daughters, Becky Porter, Vicki Shaub, and Penny Riddle, and six grandchildren, Christi Shaub, Brian Shaub, Anna Shaub, Angela Shaub, Boone Riddle and Mellie Riddle.
Brother Douthitt's first wife, Mellie went to be with the Lord and Master January 18, 1975.
Brother Boone married a Christian widow, Mrs. Otis Wyatt, October 23, 1975. Before her marriage she was Eva McClain, and sister of Mrs. Adron (Mignon) Doran. Eva preceded Boone in death.
Brother Douthitt started his preaching career on the third Sunday of April, 1916. He preached that first sermon at William's Chapel Church of Christ near where he was born and reared. He preached at William's Chapel on the 60th anniversary of his preaching. He preached the gospel for more than 70 years. He spent many years just preaching in series of meetings. He told me a disputant in about 65 debates.
Brother Douthitt served as a regular preacher for the Lord's church in the following places: Murray, Kentucky (7th and Poplar); Cookeville, Tennessee (Broad St., now Jefferson St.); Florence, Alabama (Sherrod Ave.); Louisville, Kentucky (Haldeman Ave.); Nashville, Tennessee (Grandview Heights).
Boone followed M.C. Kurfees at Haldeman Ave. church in Louisville, brother Kurfees had preached there forty-five years. Boone preached there five years and then entered the world of preaching in series of meetings.
After going into meeting work, Boone made his home in Nashville and preached some during the winter months for churches in the area. His last position was with the Riverwood Church of Christ. This generous church kept him as an associate minister long after he became unable to drive, to hear and to read. He was legally blind for about 4 years.
Brother Douthitt attended Freed-Hardeman College and finished all the courses of the special three year program there for those studying to be gospel preachers. A. G. Freed, N. B. Hardeman and others were his teachers. He heard many other great preachers including T. B. Larimore. He said that brother Larimore said that in his earlier years of preaching he felt compelled to preach at least an hour and thirty minutes each time. He gave as the reason that many of the people walked to church and were tired and had to get rested while he was preaching and it took them awhile to get involved with listening. Brother Larimore then said that after there was better transportation he had to start shortening his sermons, and that it was hard to "boil them down."
Brother Boone preached in several meetings where Margie and I labored. He always stayed in our home. He was always a very pleasant guest. He and I talked many times until late at night and at other times about many matters of mutual interest. He was a good story teller, and could tell many true stories that were very amusing.
Boone was a personal friend of Margie's and mine for nearly 40 years. During some severe trials in our lives we lived near him in Nashville, TN. I often went to him during those months and we talked and he was a great help and encouragement.
Funeral service for brother Douthitt were conducted September 25, 1989 at Woodlawn Funeral Home in Nashville, TN. Adron Doran officiated and was assisted by David East. Henry Arnold directed congregational singing. Burial was in Woodlawn Cemetery in Nashville.
I will miss my old friend, but I expect to see him in that better world.
-The Editor, Basil Overton, The World Evangelist, January, 1990, page 4
Gospel Meeting Advertisement
The Evening Review, Saturday, March 21, 1953, p.7
East Liverpool, Ohio
Location Of The Grave Of B.L. Douthitt
Boone L. Douthitt is buried in the Woodlawn Memorial Park Cemetery In Nashville, Tennessee. The Cemetery is located behind the 100 Oaks Shopping Center that faces I-65 just before the I-440 Interchange. From 100 Oaks travel east on Thompson Lane and turn left into the main entrance of the Woodlawn Cemetery. Take your first left and travel up the hill. Note that Fountain View C & D will be on your left. At the top of the hill you will see a fountain area. Turn to the right and pull off to the left. You should be in front of a sign saying, "Fountain Lawn B." Head straight back five rows and to the left toward a large oak tree. See photo below. After visiting the Douthitt plot head south following the same row past the sidewalk into Fountain View A, and counting in six plots you will come to the grave of Batsell Barrett Baxter, another well gospel preacher of the 20th Century.
Fountain Lawn B - Lot 658 #2
GPS N 36° 06' 848" x WO 86° 45' 874"
Accuracy to within 14ft.
Grave Faces West
June 13, 1900
Jan. 18, 1975
Jan. 14, 1899
Sept. 24, 1989