Willard Joel Pevey

Published 7:41 am Wednesday, September 25, 2013


Dr. Willard Joel Pevey of Nacogdoches, Texas, passed away Monday, Sept. 23, 2013, at the age of 83. He was born in Bogalusa on April 6, 1930, and was raised in Lee’s Creek Baptist Church. He graduated from Bogalusa High School in 1947 and entered the United States Air Force, stationed in San Antonio, Texas.

After completing his initial service, he moved back to Louisiana to begin his college education. He initially attended Southeastern University in Hammond, but transferred to Louisiana State University in 1951, where he completed his bachelor’s degree and earned his doctor of medicine in obstetrics and gynecology. While at LSU, he met his future wife of 60 years, Jo Rhea Blackwell Pevey, and they were married in the Baptist Student Union on campus on Nov. 26, 1952.

Upon graduation, he served 12 years in the USAF and in 1967, he left the service, with the rank of major, to start a private practice in Shreveport. The next year, he moved his family to Nacogdoches to open an OBGYN practice with Dr. Jerry Sanders, a friend and fellow Air Force officer.

Dr. Pevey practiced medicine in Nacogdoches for 10 years. He re-entered the Air Force in 1978 as a lieutenant colonel and was stationed at Bergstrom AFB in Austin, Texas. In 1980, he was assigned to Wiesbaden, West Germany, as medical director of the USAF hospital. He served in this capacity during the time the American hostages held in Iran were released and brought to Wiesbaden for medical evaluation before returning to America.

In 1983, he was promoted to full colonel and returned to Bergstrom AFB as hospital commander. Col. Pevey joined the USAF Inspector General Team in 1985 and spent the next two years traveling to USAF hospitals around the world. His military career, which began at age 17, came full circle when he returned to San Antonio where he retired as deputy surgeon general of the USAF Air Training Command, Randolph Air Force Base.

Following retirement from the Air Force, Dr. and Mrs. Pevey moved back to Baton Rouge, where he taught and mentored OBGYN residents at the LSU School of Medicine. After entering full retirement, Dr. and Mrs. Pevey moved to Huntsville, Texas. In 2011, they moved back to Nacogdoches, Texas.

Willard Joel Pevey was a wonderful human being who had an intense belief and faith in our Lord and Savior. He had a great love for family, a deep caring for others and extraordinary love of music. His unique sense of humor, warmth and compassion for his patients and his straightforward outlook on life will always be remembered by all. We love him and will miss him greatly.

His wife, Jo Rhea Clare Blackwell Pevey; a sister, Mary Frances Pevey Riseden; and a brother, Harold Arthur Pevey, preceded him in death.

He is survived by his sister, Winnifred Geraldine “Judi” Pevey Coers of Marble Falls, Texas; three daughters, April Pevey Stanaland and husband, Alan, of Leander, Texas; Jody Pevey Perroni of Bacliff, Texas; and Lisa Pevey Rodrigues and husband, Tim, of Nacogdoches; a son, Scott Pevey and wife, Sandy, of Edmond, Okla.; his grandchildren, Summer Stanaland Jurrells and husband, Jason, Clay Stanaland and wife, Amy, Jessica Perroni and Felipe Garza, Jace Pevey, Laura Dean, Tanner Dean, Ladonna Cook and husband, Ryan, Robert Rodrigues and Marcus Rodrigues; his great-grandchildren, Braden Jurrells, Abigail Stanaland, Jackson Jurrells, Avery Stanaland, Christion Byers, Haley Byers, and Connor Cook. He is also survived by numerous nieces and nephews.

The Pevey Family would like to give special thanks to the caregivers of their beloved mother and father over the past year, including Dana Thorn (owner), Charles Royal, DeAndra Mitchell, Tona Parker Greer, Consuela Forney, Rolanda Coleman, Canesha Cartwright, all of Principle Home Health, and also Connie Varner and J.R. Stein of Heart to Heart Hospice.

Funeral services will be held Wednesday, Sept. 25, at 11 a.m. at Laird Funeral Home with Bro. Dub Holland officiating. A graveside service and interment will be held at Lee’s Creek Baptist Church in Bogalusa on Friday at 11 a.m.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Lee’s Creek Baptist Church, 1803 Lee’s Creek Church Road, Bogalusa, LA 70427.