American Baptist Churches of Ohio News from our regions around the state.

Rev. Alvin Ray Cox Goes to His Eternal Home with the Lord


Rev. Alvin Ray Cox, 74, of Delaware, Ohio, passed peacefully at his home surrounded by his family to his eternal home with the Lord and Savior on Friday, September 18, after a valiant battle with cancer the past 6 years. "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith." 2 Timothy 4:7

Alvin was born at home on May 31, 1946 to the late Paul and Blanche (King) Cox, in Gilmer County, West Virginia. He was number 4 of their 8 children. He grew up on a farm and the story of him preaching to the cows as a young child was told over and over to his family. Alvin served as a member of the West Virginia Army Reserves.

He married Beverly (Shaver) on June 22, 1968 and they celebrated 52 years together. In their love, they had three children, DeeDee, Jeff & Jeremy. They added 5 grandchildren and 1 great-granddaughter. Alvin was a devoted husband and loving father, grandfather and great grandfather. He will be greatly missed by his loving family.

Read more: Rev. Alvin Ray Cox Goes to His Eternal Home with the Lord

Pastor James W. Allison Passes

Pastor James W. Allison, 89, of New Lexington, Ohio died on Thursday, August 27, 2020 at Genesis Hospital, Zanesville, Ohio. Born June 13, 1931 in Somerset, Kentucky to the late Clyde Lee and Iva Anderson Allison. He graduated from St. Mary's High School; Rio Grande College; and Northern Baptist Seminary. He served as Pastor of Baptist Churches for 50 years; enjoyed carpentry, repairing broken things and yard sales. 

Pastor Allison is survived by his wife of 67 years, Wilda M. Dicke Allison; daughter, Patricia (Dean) Barnes, sons, Bruce (Kathy) Allison and Neal (Karen) Allison; grandchildren, Beth (Troy) Pingle, Tyrus Barnes, Kyle (Sarah) Barnes, Vanessa Allison, Joshua Allison and Anna Allison; great grandchildren, Evan, Trey, Avery and Audrey; brothers, John Allison and Richard Allison. In addition to his parents, preceded in death by brothers, Robert, Donald, Harold and Edward; sister, Darlene; granddaughter, Laura Maye Allison. Please keep the Allison family in your prayers.

Sophia Stephenson Joins the Angels

The American Baptist Churches of Ohio extends Christian Sympathy to the family of Sophia Stephenson, who passed away on July 24, and to the First Baptist Church of Delaware.  Mrs. Stephenson was the wife of the late Dr. James “Steve” Stephenson, who served as pastor of the First Baptist Church of Delaware from 1947 to 1987.  A memorial service is planned for a later date, and an obituary is not yet available, but the family would like to share this sad news with the ABC Ohio community.  Please join in prayers for the Stephenson family.

Rev. Edward G. Brutto Has Passed into Heaven's Arms


Rev. Edward G. Brutto, age 77, of Sebring passed away Sunday July 12 at Crandall Medical Center in Sebring. Rev. Brutto pastored for ten years at Mt. Moriah Baptist Church in Bloomingdale.

He was born September 28, 1942 in Canton, to Elmer and Ardena (Heinbauch) Brutto. A 1960 graduate of Sebring High School he went on to attend Kent State University. Edward was a veteran of the US Army Reserves who went to compete on the first Army Pistol Team in which they placed 8th in the world. He worked in telecommunications, working for several companies across Ohio such as Ohio Bell Ameritech, SBC, and AT&T before his retirement. Edward was a 52 year member of Alliance First Baptist Church.

He was involved in many organizations including American Baptist Churches of Ohio, President of Telephone Pioneers of America of Youngstown, as well as being a lifetime member of the NRA. He enjoyed fishing and hunting, as well as being a chef who enjoyed delighting others with his talent for cooking and catering. 

Those left to cherish his memory are his daughter, Danielle (Ray Dyer) Brutto; son Timothy E. (Deana) Brutto; granddaughters, Rachel and Monica Brutto.

He is preceded in death by his parents; wife, Linda K. Brutto whom he married September 3, 1966 and who passed away June 12, 2010

Memorial contributions can be made in Edward’s name to Alliance First Baptist Church 1659 W. State St Alliance, Ohio 44601 or Heart Reach Ministries of Youngstown 211 Redondo Rd, Youngstown, OH 44504.

Please keep the Brutto family in your prayers.

Rev. Rev. Richard Hunter Clossman Goes to be with the Lord


Dr. Rev. Richard Hunter Clossman, 91, of Elgin, passed away in his home surrounded by his loving family on November 9, 2019. He was born in Kokomo, IN on September 19, 1928 to the late Elmer Dunlap and Mary E. (Hunter) Clossman.

Richard was a graduate of Bob Jones University in South Carolina and Northern Baptist Theological Seminary in Chicago, IL and was ordained in 1952. He received a masters of Arts and a PHD in History from The Ohio State University in 1965 and 1971 respectively.

Dr Clossman served in ministry for congregations in Ohio, West Virginia, and Illinois. He also served as campus minister for American Baptist Students at Ball State University from 1968 to 1972. In 1972 he took a professorship of History at Judson College in Elgin, IL and retired from that calling in 1997, He was an active member of the First Baptist Church in Elgin, IL

Dr Clossman was the author of several books; A History of the Ohio Baptist Convention, I Will Stand and Sing, and American Character and the Influence of Film. He was an accomplished pianist and organist. He and his wife enjoyed season tickets to the opera in Chicago. He was a longtime member of Kiwanis and Friends of Judson.

Please keep the Clossman family in your prayers.