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The Rev. Lynwood H. Leverette Sr. died Dec. 30. He had pastored Mount Pisgah Christian Methodist Episcopal Church in West Baltimore for more than two decades.
The Rev. Lynwood H. Leverette Sr. died Dec. 30. He had pastored Mount Pisgah Christian Methodist Episcopal Church in West Baltimore for more than two decades. (Baltimore Sun)

The Rev. Lynwood H. Leverette Sr., who served as pastor of Mount Pisgah Christian Methodist Episcopal Church in West Baltimore for more than two decades, died Dec. 30 at Northwest Hospital of pneumonia. He was 66.

The son of the Rev. Joe Nathan Leverette Sr., a Christian Methodist Episcopal minister, and Sadie Leverette, a homemaker, Lynwood Hudson Leverette Sr. was born in Durham, N.C., and moved to Baltimore in 1962, where he graduated from city public schools.

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Dr. Leverette served in the Navy from 1966 to 1968 as a patrol boat trainer, family members said. He returned to Baltimore and attended the old Bay College at Howard and Centre streets, where he earned an associate's degree in business administration.

From 1970 to 1984, Dr. Leverette worked at the Baltimore City Jail as a corrections officer and attained the rank of lieutenant.

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In 1986, he earned a bachelor's degree in criminal justice from Shaw University in Raleigh, N.C., and a master's degree in 1997 in religious education, and two years later, a second master's degree in theology both from St. Mary's Seminary & University in Roland Park.

He was awarded a doctorate in human letters from Eastern Theological Seminary in Lynchburg, Va.

He was ordained a Christian Methodist Episcopal minister in 1982, and was pastor of St. John CME Church in Harrisburg, Pa., from 1982 to 1984. From 1984 to 1993, he was pastor of Brown Temple CMC Church in Asheville, N.C.

Since 1993, Dr. Leverette had been pastor of Mount Pisgah CME Church in the 1000 block of N. Fulton Ave. in West Baltimore. The 300-member congregation is the only CME church in the city.

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Last year, his church hosted the General Conference for the Christian Methodist Episcopal Church, which was held at the Baltimore Convention Center and attended by more than 5,000, including 3,000 delegates from all 50 states, Haiti and several African countries.

"He had a servant's heart and Southern hospitality," said Brenda G. Thomas, a longtime church member. "He was a kind and gentle spirit and never failed to help persons in need."

The longtime Park Heights resident enjoyed building and collecting model cars and watching classic Westerns.

Funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. Friday at New Shiloh Baptist Church, 2100 N. Monroe St.

He is survived by his wife of 36 years, the former Valensey Sharon Mitchell; two sons, Lynwood H. Leverette Jr. of Denver and Sir Michael Leverette of Albany, N.Y.; two daughters, Myesha Leverette of Baltimore and Suzette Leverette of Raleigh, N.C.; a stepson, Phillip Gray of Baltimore; two stepdaughters, Phyllis Wilkins and Raquel Wilkins, both of Baltimore; five brothers, Joe Nathan Leverette Jr. of Los Angeles, Clarence Leverette of Mooresville, N.C., the Rev. Patrick Leverette of Hampton Roads, Va., the Rev. Ronald Leverette of Baltimore, and the Rev. Alexis Timothy Leverette of Chattanooga, Tenn.; two sisters, Patricia Leverette Jones of Glen Burnie and Mary Jo Leverette of Richmond, Va.; seven grandchildren; and a great-grandson. Another daughter, Juaria Lynette Leverette was murdered in 1998. An earlier marriage to Johnnie Sue Leverette ended in divorce.

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