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Hundreds Attend Celebration of Life Service for Johnny Morgan

By Alyssa Schnugg

News editor


The late Johnny Morgan. Photo via Facebook

Johnny Morgan loved a good story and there was a good number shared at his Celebration of Life service Tuesday afternoon.

The stories shared before, during and after the service invoked chuckles and sometimes, full belly laughs. Yet, when the giggles died down, the tears fell and tissues came out as friends and family gathered at Oxford-University Methodist Church to say goodbye and reminisce about the many memories with Morgan.

Morgan’s cousin, Ed Morgan spoke at the service.

Morgan, 76, died last week when his plane crashed in Washington County, Arkansas. The cause of the crash is still under investigation.

He was a former Mississippi Senator and Lafayette County Supervisor. He founded the Morgan White Insurance Group and the Good Ol’ Boys and Gals social and political events.

The chapel at OUUMC was standing-room-only. Those attending included Mississippi senators, local leaders, and business owners – and all were called “friends” by Morgan.

Morgan’s cousin, Ed Morgan, spoke of Morgan’s passion for life and family, his honesty and his charitable nature.

“He gave generously, but he didn’t expect or want to be recognized for that,” Ed Morgan said.

His cousin said Morgan would often help clients of Interfaith Compassion Ministries with appliances, holiday meals and other needs.

He donated the land and paid to have the North Lamar Pocket Park created.

“In all the time we spent together, he never once mentioned that act,” Ed Morgan said. “He never brought that up.”

The Rev. Warren Black and Rev. Chris McAlilly lead the service and also shared their own stories about Morgan, who had been a member of the church for more than 45 years. For most of those years, he served as an usher.

“As long as I can remember, he ushered for all three services on Christmas Eve,” Black said. “The Sunday before Johnny died, a close friend caught up with him. Her parting words, her last words to Johnny, were ‘Love you, Johnny.’ And they are all our parting words here today: Love you, Johnny.”

McAlilly said he will always have the memory of seeing Morgan on Christmas Eve, holding the candle high while standing in the back of the chapel.

“When the Lord gave us Johnny Morgan, he gave us a man who loved deeply. Johnny loved life and he lived it to the fullest,” McAlilly said. “He loved his family by blood and his family by business. He loved Tuesday morning coffee at the Beacon. He loved to dance. He loved to fly. He loved old stuff. He loved gun shows. He loved Oxford. He loved Lafayette County. He loved Ole Miss and he loved Oxford-University United Methodist Church.”

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