Former Veteran Missionary Aviator Dies

Julius C. (Jack) Dyer, Jr., age 85, passed away Tuesday, February 7, 2017, at his home in St. Francisville, Louisiana. He was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on November 5, 1931. Jack was converted at age 12 in the Methodist church, and some years later married his next door neighbor, Shirley Mae Cooper.

Dyer graduated from Louisiana State University with a degree in mechanical engineering, and for 20 years owned an engineering consulting firm. Because he wore glasses, Jack was rejected by military aviators … something that broke his heart. Eventually, he learned how to fly, and purchased his own plane.

In 1969, Jack attended a new Church of God, and in 1970, received the baptism of the Holy Ghost. He sold his engineering business, founded and pastored a church, and in 1978 became missionary overseer of Northeast Honduras. Jack affirmed: “Aviation offered a tremendous opportunity for missionary service.” His ability to fly opened the door to minister to the Miskito Indians. World Missions loaned Dyer to World Relief in 1981, which was the implementing agency for the United Nations on a refugee program among the Miskitos. He lovingly became known as “Papa Jack.”

Other accomplishments included director the international relief and development organization, Friends of the Americas, and the building of a hospital. Jack also established a farm for the training of missionary candidates, and in 1999 was asked to go to India by an organization based in Washington, DC, to manage a project involving resettlement for Tibetan refugees.

For 26 years, Dyer delivered food and medical supplies to remote regions in Honduras and India. In a Charisma magazine article, Jack was quoted as saying, “I’m a perpetual motion machine. If I stop moving, I’ll die.” And that was exactly how it was.

Former World Missions Director Dr. Douglas LeRoy in his book entitled, SENT ONES, in which Jack and Shirley are included, he wrote … “God used Jack Dyer to make a difference in the global harvest. As a minister, aviator, engineer, humanitarian-relief work, his non-traditional missionary roles have affected the lives of thousands!”

Papa Jack had a favorite quote: “I taught you everything I know, and you still don’t know nothing!” His great works and powerful legacy live on.

Jack is survived by his wife of 65 years, Shirley; three children: Deborah Cash and husband Billy from Australia; Dennis and wife Claire; and Daniel and his wife Lorena from Honduras, all of whom are serving in missions ministry; several grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Visitation is at the Resthaven Funeral Home from 5 to 8 pm today and on Saturday, February 11 from 11 to 12 pm at the Healing Place Church, with the memorial service beginning at 12 pm. Bishop Ken Anderson and Bishop Roland Vaughan will conduct the service. Burial will be at Resthaven Garden of Memory.

To send a message of condolence, use www.resthavenbatonrouge.com

World Missions Director Dr. David M. Griffis and Assistant Director Dr. M. Thomas Propes extend deepest sympathy to the family of this remarkable soldier of the Cross.