Cover photo for Jerry Bryan Russell's Obituary
Jerry Bryan Russell Profile Photo

Jerry Bryan Russell

June 21, 1940 — April 15, 2024

Silas Creek Chapel

Jerry Bryan Russell

Jerry Bryan Russell, 83, passed away at home on April 15, 2024. Jerry was born on June 21, 1940, at the City Hospital of Winston Salem, to William Bryan and Carmi Russell.  He graduated from RJ Reynolds High School in 1958.  On May 16, 1959, he married Betty Lou Kelly of Winston Salem, NC.  They eloped in South Carolina right outside of North Myrtle Beach, SC, near his grandmother’s beach house, where he learned to shag dance. In the summer of 1964, he had his firstborn son Anthony and in September of that year he took his wife and son to Great Lakes to start his job in the Navy as an electronics mate.  He served active duty on an aircraft carrier the USS Randolph and reached the rank of E-5 Petty Officer 2nd Class.

In the spring of 1970 and out of the Navy he had been working for Continental Can Company in Winston Salem as a Union Electrician. Prior to that he had gotten his Unlimited Electrical Contractors License and would soon leave his job and start his own company, calling it Russell Electric and soon thereafter Russell and Sons Electric. During this year he was dragged to Jonestown Baptist Church by his wife and soon after became a believer in his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. In 1972 he took his small family on a 3-week tour of Israel and wanted to study and know more of the Bible. Upon returning from this trip, he enrolled in night school at Piedmont Bible College. A requirement for attending the school was to choose a Christian service to be done each week. He chose to teach/preach at the Winston Salem Rescue Mission. He became lifelong friends with the man who ran the mission, Neil Wilcox. He continued his teaching/preaching at the mission up until the early 2000’s.

Not long after returning from Israel he had another son, Joshua in 1974. This completed his family of four. As the years passed, his sons married and gave him grandchildren and great grandchildren. Both of his sons, and two of his grandsons are electricians, making 3 generations of electricians.

He enjoyed going on vacations with all of his family but loved taking his wife and the grandchildren to see the shows in Pigeon Forge. He also loved shooting and collecting his guns and was an excellent marksman. He also loved to be out on the water in a boat, either in the ocean or on a lake. He would take his family many, many times to Disney and would pay for the entire trip for everyone.

His favorite actor was John Wayne and he saw El Dorado and Rio Bravo about 378 times each. One of his favorite mini-series was Lonesome Dove and he and his wife would quote lines to each other as they would ride somewhere or just sitting in the den. If it was a western, he was satisfied to watch it. He was not a big sports fan but as he got older, he loved watching the Braves play baseball. He would often say that heaven had to be like those summer days when you were a boy playing baseball and it just seemed like the day would never end.
As he and his wife got older, Betty developed Alzheimer’s. And for the last five years of her life, he cared for her and would take her to all her doctor’s appointments. Though his mind was good, his physical health started to decline drastically. In June of 2023, his wife, Betty passed. Over the next 10 months he regained some strength and health. He was recently given the news that a mass had developed in his upper leg and that it had spread to his lymph nodes and that at his age and health conditions he would most likely not survive the treatment. Even with treatment he would not regain the use of his leg. His alternative was to head home and take pain medicine to control the pain. And within two weeks of receiving his diagnosis, he passed away at 7:40 am Monday April the 15th, with his two sons, and a lifelong friend of 50 years at his side. 

In the last two weeks he was still awake and aware of his surroundings and what all was going on. Many of his lifelong friends came to visit and reminisce about the old times. These were men and women that he knew from work and church. 

Of all the things he loved: his children and grandchildren and great grandchildren and the Lord, he loved his wife and longed to be with her again in a new body. A new body that was able to run and jump and most of all dance. 

The one thing he would say to all is do not cry for me, I am not in a better place, but the best place. With the best body, with the best people. Why not come and join me here?  

Surviving are two sons, Anthony Todd and Joshua Christopher (Darla); three grandchildren, Caleb Todd, Cory Abram Jacob Bryan; two great grandchildren, Holly Jane, Lucas Abram ( Cory and Charity); two step grandchildren, McKenzie (Evan), Garrett (Emily); four step great grandchildren, Madi Rose, Ellie, Josie, Able; sister, Jo Ann (Don Lloyd) of North Myrtle Beach, SC; niece, Cynthia Dalton (Tony); Lifelong Friend/Brother to the family of 50 years, Stewart Vann Warren, who came to help out for just a few weeks but has stayed to help me with pops day to day care for over 6 months. Not only has he worked for my father, my son, and myself, but he has been a friend and a brother and son to the Russell Family; Shelia, the CNA who was with me during Mom’s care and passing and with Pops; those who helped from Trellis Supportive Care: Christina Lee, CNA; Lyndsay Barker, Nurse; Reales Santiago, Chaplin; and Beverly, the lady who took most of my frantic calls and calmed my nerves.

A funeral service will be held at 4:00 PM, Friday, April 19, 2024, at Robinhood Road Baptist Church.

Online condolences may be made at www.hayworth-miller.com

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Jerry Bryan Russell, please visit our flower store.

Past Services

Funeral Service

Friday, April 19, 2024

Starts at 4:00 pm (Eastern time)

Robinhood Road Baptist Church

5422 Robinhood Rd, Winston-Salem, NC 27106

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