Deacon Jerry Hegwood was born June 19, 1949, the youngest son of the late Mack and Catherine Hegwood of Smackover, Arkansas. Jerry attended Smackover Training School, graduating from high school in 1967. He obtained a degree in Industrial Arts at Arkansas AM&N (the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff) in 1969. Jerry was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1969 serving in artillery. He served in Vietnam from October 6, 1970, to October 26, 1971. He was a recipient of the Purple Heart and Bronze Star. Upon his discharge, he returned home and resumed his work as a carpenter.
On August 19, 1972, Jerry married Zelma Ruth Parham. They were blessed with one daughter. In October 1974, he became self-employed and started Hegwood Construction as a licensed and bonded general contractor.
Jerry united with the church at a young age. He was an active member of First Baptist Church on MLK Drive in Smackover where he served in several capacities including chairman of the deacon board and assistant Sunday school superintendent. Some of his civic activities included being a member of the Smackover Zoning Board and Chamber of Commerce as well as serving 26 years on the Smackover School Board.
He loved to work, often being told he lived to work. He also enjoyed hunting, fishing, and gardening. He was known for his fall turnip greens with huge bottoms. Jerry entered his home to eternal rest on Christmas Day, Friday, December 25, 2020, at CHI St. Vincent hospital in Little Rock, Arkansas. He was preceded in death by his parents, Mack and Catherine Hegwood, and a brother, Charles Pearson.
Jerry leaves to cherish many loving memories. Wife of 48 years: Zelma Hegwood of Smackover, AR. Daughter: Jerri Ruth Hegwood of Marion, AR, and future son-in-law, Corey Mills of West Memphis, AR. One brother: Robert (Marie) Hegwood of Smackover, AR. Two sisters: Maxine Hegwood of Smackover, AR, and Mary (Vernon) Parker of Conyers, GA. One aunt: Jimmie (James) Mitchell of Milwaukee, WI. One uncle: J.D. (Elaine) Hegwood of Cleveland, OH. He also leaves several nieces, nephews, cousins, the Parham family, and friends.To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Deacon Jerry Hegwood, please visit our flower store.