Deaths

January 10, 2006

Addie Davis, 88, the first woman ordained a Southern Baptist minister, died December 3 in her hometown of Covington, Virginia, after a brief illness. She was ordained in 1964 by Watts Street Baptist Church in Durham, North Carolina. At the time no one at the church knew that the seminary student was making history. Davis served churches in Vermont and Rhode Island as well. Baptist historian Pam Durso said Davis’s ordination “marked a new era for [Southern] Baptists, and in the 41 years since that event, thousands of women have been ordained by Baptist churches in the South.”

William Tracy Early, 71, longtime New York correspondent for Catholic News Service, died December 16 at St. Luke’s Hospital in New York. His chosen byline, Tracy Early, was widely recognized in the Catholic press. But when he checked into St. Luke’s last summer for what turned out to be necrotizing pneumonia, he used his first name and friends were slow to locate him, according to David Waugh, pastor of Metro Baptist Church and director of Rauschenbusch Metro Ministries. A memorial service was to be held this month at Riverside Church, where the Texas-raised journalist worshiped.