The Reverend Doctor Joe Harding, 78, of Corvallis, Ore., passed away at the Mennonite Village in Albany, Ore., after a six-year battle with Alzheimer's disease.
"Joe Andy" was born in Kennett on July 8, 1929, the eldest of two sons born to Andrew Farris Harding of Hickman, Ky., and Elsie Jeanette Harper of Roanoke, Va.
After earning his doctor of ministry degree from the San Francisco Theological Seminary, he wrote his first book, Have I Told You Lately-Preaching to Help People and Churches Grow. He developed an innovative radio and television ministry reaching 50,000 persons daily with a brief message of Christian affirmation and hope.
During his career, he spoke in 46 states, 10 countries. In 2004, Boston University School of Theology honored him with the Distinguished Alumni Award.
For Joe, life was an exciting adventure. He used humorous stories to share his message and he helped thousands of people grow in their faith.
Memorial contributions can be made to the Central Untied Protestant Church in Richland, Wash., or to the Kenya Methodist University Development Association in care of Central United Protestant Church.
Joe is survived by his wife, Carol Jensen of Corvallis, Ore. In Washington state survivors include his former wife, Lucy Harding, three sons, Joel, John and Phillip Harding; grandchildren, Aaron, Jenny, Jake and Sarah Harding and a great-granddaughter. In Missouri his relatives include his brother and sister-in-law, Jim and Carolyn Harding, of Kirksville, Mo.; his niece, Susan Harding Sells and family, of Rolla, Mo.; his nephew, John D. Harding and family of Cape Girardeau, Mo., and his cousins, Betty Jane Robison, of Kennett and Betty Harper Blackburn, of Columbia, Mo.
On Saturday, Nov. 24, 2007, a private burial service was held in Richland, Wash. Two memorial services are planned. One is on Saturday, Jan. 5, 2008 in Richland. The other is on Saturday, Feb. 3, 2008, in Salem, Ore.