Born: December 25, 1929
Died: February 23, 2013
Funeral services for Rev. Van B. Upshaw Jr., will be held at 1:00 p.m., Saturday, March 2, 2013, at Pleasant Hill Baptist Church, in Leesville. Burial will follow in the Leesville Memorial Cemetery in Leesville, LA.
Visitation will be held Saturday, March 2nd, from 11:30am - until service time in the church.
Rev. Van B. Upshaw Jr. was the first of fifteen children born December 25, 1929 in Charleston Mississippi to Van and Elnora Foster Upshaw. As a young child his family moved to Batesville Mississippi. In 1950 he enlisted in the United States Army. In 1951 he met and married the love of his life Margaret D. Mattox. After serving two tours overseas in Germany, several stateside installations, in the Korean Conflict and the Vietnam War, in the Tanker, Military Policemen, and Quartermasters units, he retired in 1972, after serving (22 years) with the rank of Sargent and as a recipient of the Bronze Star with an honorable discharge. Upon retiring from the Army he began a lengthy employment with the Louisiana Department of Corrections, working at various correctional centers such as Angola State Penitentiary, DeQuincy Detention Center, and Oakdale Federal Detention Center in the capacity of head cook and kitchen supervisor. He was an active member of Pleasant Hill Baptist church for the past 40 years serving in various capacities such as a Deacon, Sunday School teacher, Associate Minister, Director of Prison ministry. He was licensed to preach the Gospel ministry and was ordained in 1981. Upon relocating to Memphis Tenn. after his wife’s death Rev. Upshaw joined Deliverance Temple COGIC under Elder Gerald Hunt and continued what he felt was his ministry by bringing the Word of God to those incarcerated and convalescent.
Van was preceded in death by his father Van B. Upshaw Sr, his mother Elnora Foster Upshaw brothers Ozzie James Upshaw and Deodos Upshaw, sisters Lula Mae Upshaw Blackburn and Mary Ellen Upshaw Perkins his wife of 58 years Margaret M. Upshaw, daughter Carolyn Ann Buckles and son Ira Cordell Upshaw Sr.
He leaves behind to honor his memory seven children: Linda King (Booker) of Hephzibah Georgia, Brenda Henry of Long Beach, California, Terry Upshaw of Leesville Louisiana, Dexter (Joyce) Upshaw Sr. of Spring Texas, Van B. Upshaw III of Springfield Missouri, Cedric (Shelly) Upshaw of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Margrett L. Upshaw of Springfield Massachusetts, and a loving daughter n law Alice (Madison) Upshaw Guess. Eight brothers Lawrence (Maggie) Upshaw, Robert Upshaw, Ulysses (Middie) Upshaw, Isaiah (Theresa) Upshaw, Elder Samuel (Joyce) Upshaw, Elder Lee O’Neil Upshaw (Arlena), Elvens (Joanne) Upshaw Charles Upshaw and two sisters Anner Catherine Upshaw and Lenora Upshaw
Fifteen grandchildren will continue his legacy: Carla (Ashley) Buckles-Rice, Cartrell Buckles Sr., Canetha (Bernard) Hadnott-Sturden, Orenthal James Hadnott, Latrecia King, Dexter (Lindsey), Upshaw Jr. DeAndre Upshaw, Danielle Upshaw, Ira Cordell Upshaw Jr., Katrina Upshaw, Ryan Upshaw, Gabrielle Williams, John Upshaw, Colin Upshaw and Mia Upshaw. Cherishing his memory is six great grandchildren: Laishah Carter, Brandon & Bernard Jr. Sturden, Jaden & Jordan Rice, Keiyara Taylor, Amourion Walton, Messiah Cartrell G. Buckles Jr., Shaunetrelle Buckles, Zoe Upshaw and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.