(May 27, 1933 - May 24, 2018)
Jarrell Leon Tharp was born May 27, 1933 in Clovis, New Mexico, to Emmy E. Athey and Stephen John Tharp. His earthly life ended on May 24, 2018, three days short of his 85th birthday.
During Jarrell’s growing-up years, the family lived in many places in the Texas Panhandle, east Texas, California (during World War II) and back to Texas. Jarrell said that he went to 13 different schools and one of them for four years — Amherst High School. While in high school, he was active in FFA, played a little football, participated in boxing, and met Nelloyd Harmon. They both graduated in 1951 and were married that fall on Nov. 3.
Needing a job to support Nelloyd, Jarrell moved to Sweetwater, Texas, and worked at Wayne Smith Motors. In 1952, Jarrell attended a city-wide youth revival and began to feel the tug toward preaching the Gospel. After counseling with his pastor and his father-in-law David Harmon, the couple returned to Amherst and Jarrell began farming. That tug did not go away, and Jarrell enrolled in McMurry College in 1953 and began his journey in the ministry.
Jarrell graduated from McMurry College and Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University, and was ordained a Deacon in 1960 and an Elder in 1963. He served several churches in Texas and transferred to the Yellowstone Conference in 1970, where he was appointed to Powell, Wyoming. He also served as Billings District Superintendent and UMC of the Tetons in Jackson, Wyoming. He retired in 1995 and moved back to Powell.
Jarrell loved to preach and teach about Jesus.
Some of Jarrell’s achievements were: the first in his family to graduate college, awarded 1962-63 Town and Country Pastor of the Year, attaining a private pilot’s license and then a commercial license, serving on the Powell hospital board, and being a District Superintendent. His hobbies were fishing, hunting, camping, flying, photography, and cheering for the Dallas Cowboys.
Jarrell and Nell have two children, Lisa Nelloyd Tharp (Lee Kenworthy) of Cheney, Washington and Stephen David Tharp (Ronada Gilman) of Billings, Montana. Jarrell and Nell have two grandchildren, Brittney Tharp and Samantha Tharp of Victor, Idaho; and two bonus grandchildren, Ashlee Brown of Boise, Idaho and Brian Nelson of Hillsboro, Oregon.
Other family members are nephew Tony Tharp of Leander, Texas and niece Kay Tharp Kropp of Sweetwater, Texas; sister and brother-in-law Joy and Harvey Patterson of Amherst, Texas and brother-in-law Ron Coffee of Rome, Georgia.
Jarrell was preceded in death by his parents Steve and Emmy Tharp; and brother, Clay Tharp.
A memorial celebration will be at First United Methodist Church in Powell on Wednesday, May 30, 2018, at 2 p.m. Memorial gifts may be given to the Foundation, First UMC, Box 778, Powell, WY 82435, or the charity of your choice.