Dr. John “David” Talley, 58, of Benton closed his eyes to his earthly home and opened his eyes to his heavenly home June 15, 2019.
He was born May 11, 1961 in Springhill, LA to John Thomas and the late Donna (Smith) Talley.
David gave his life to lead people to the Lord and closer to the cross. He closed a successful business ten years ago to follow the calling the Lord placed on his heart. He founded The Crusader’s Ministries in 1988. He and his family traveled 300 days per year evangelizing and singing. David was a faithful follower of the Lord and trusted that God would provide their needs. His family said that David would use his last dime to serve others and lead them to the Lord without a second thought. His philosophy was “What is the Price of a Soul Worth?” David never turned down an invitation to come sing and preach -- it didn’t matter what the offering would be, there were souls needing to hear the gift of salvation.
David was a gifted musician and could play several instruments and had a beautiful singing voice. He had a recording studio and was an accomplished song writer. Many of his songs landed on the Top 10 Gospel Charts and were featured on the Jimmy Swaggart Ministries and on many Crusader’s albums.
One of his top 10 songs, “He’s Right There,” was written by David, Jon, and Ashley.
David wore many hats in the ministry: preacher, evangelist, singer, prophet, prayer warrior, minister, teacher, plus so many more. He was a father figure and mentor to so many.
David became pastor of Benton Four Square Church in October 2018, ironically where he preached his first message 10 years prior entitled, “Why Would You Ever Want to Look Back?” His love for the Bible led him to memorize and live by Psalm 1, “Blessed is the man…” Although he traveled the world, his ultimate dream was lived out as he visited Israel and had the opportunity to baptize 17 people in the River of Jordan just a month ago.
David taught others how to live for Christ and die with spiritual integrity. He ministered and prayed for people coming to visit him until the day he passed away.
David was a Presidential Director of First Fitness Nutrition where he won seven dream vacations along with a Mercedes. David was a top award earner for 40 months straight.
David loved his family with all his heart. He was affectionately known as “Pops” to his grandchildren. His family enjoyed evangelizing together and sharing the gospel. David loved being outdoors camping and boating. Instead of fishing for fish, he laid it all down to be a fisher of men. Family refer to David as “Mr. Fix-It.” He was an amazing bus mechanic and could often diagnose problems a vehicle was having by simply listening to it on the phone or seeing a picture of the engine.
He leaves behind to cherish his memory his loving wife of 37 years, Penney (Wise) Talley of Benton, Arkansas; two children, Amber Byrd and husband Scott of Benton, Arkansas and Jonathan Talley and wife Ashley of Ashdown, Arkansas; honorary son, Steven Hayes of Benton, Arkansas; grandchildren, Anniston Byrd, Karsyn Byrd, Tatum Talley, Rylan Talley, and expected in December, Kinsley Talley; father, John Thomas Talley and wife Kay of Emerson, Arkansas; brother, Thomas Curtis Talley and wife Karen of Bella Vista, Arkansas; spiritual mentor, Bro. Mac Wilbanks of Ridgeland, Mississippi; host of nieces and nephews; family members; and thousands of friends across the United States and worldwide who love David and will miss him always.
Visitation will be held 6-8 p.m. Tuesday, June 18, at Smith-Benton Funeral Home, 322 N. Market Street, Benton, Arkansas.
A funeral service, officiated by Bro. Steven Hayes along with many other speakers, will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday, June 19, at Benton Four Square Church, 2722 Military Road, Benton, Arkansas.
Burial will be at 10 a.m. Thursday, June 20, at Western Cemetery in Emerson.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to The Crusader’s Ministries to continue the legacy of his ministry.
Services are entrusted to Smith-Benton Funeral Home.