Roy Gustafson, Billy Graham Associate, Dies

Billy Graham Evangelistic Assn
Friday, 12 April 2002

The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA) announced today the death of associate evangelist Roy W. Gustafson, who died in his home in Raleigh, N.C., after a period of declining health. He was 87 years old.

Dr. Billy Graham said, "Roy was a close personal friend since the early days of my ministry. He was a very important part of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association for many years. He was instrumental in sharing the gospel with thousands around the world especially through his teaching in the land of the Bible. His encouragement and dedication to the scriptures will be deeply missed."

Gustafson was an ordained minister of the Baptist church in Palatka, Fla. He graduated in 1941 with a B.A. degree from Asbury College in Wilmore, Ky. He also studied at Florida Bible Institute in Tampa, Fla.; and before becoming an itinerant Bible teacher, he served as a pastor of First Baptist Tucson in Arizona.

In 1959 Gustafson joined the staff at the BGEA and enlarged the international scope of the BGEA's ministry. His unique ministry involved conducting over 150 trips to the Middle East. Although he retired in 1986, he continued to make many trips internationally on behalf of the Association.

"Roy Gustafson had a big impact on my life. In my teenage years, I worked with Roy on many trips to the Middle East. It was through him that I first felt the calling to get involved in ministry and worked in a mission hospital in northern Jordan. Roy's influence on my life helped shape and mold the direction of my life. I might not be where I am today had it not been for the influence of this great and unique Christian statesman," said Franklin Graham.

He is survived by his wife Gwendolyn and their daughters -- Sonja Hicks, Enid Yopp and Donella Lynne.

A memorial service is scheduled for Tuesday, April 16, at 1:00 p.m. in the Chatlos Memorial Chapel at the Billy Graham Training Center at The Cove, near Asheville, N.C.

For more information, or to contact Billy Graham Evangelistic Assn, see their website at: www.billygraham.org

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