This week’s centralohio.com news feed carries news of the death of Jim Boggan, who was affiliated with the Southwest (OH) Grace Brethren Church (Tony Webb, pastor). Boggan, who was a freelance writer, wrote several articles for FGBC World, the all-Grace Brethren periodical published by Brethren Missionary Herald Co. Here is his obituary:
James E. Boggan, 50, of Orient, passed into the arms of the Lord Jesus, Giver of Life and Peace, October 23, 2007.
He was preceded in death by his stepmother, Mary Alice Boggan. James is survived by his wife, Shelley; son, Nathan; father, J. Austin Boggan; mother, Nelda Boggan; brothers, Stephen and Larry Boggan; stepsister, Lynne Crooks and stepbrothers, Lane and Lon McPherson.
James was a reporter for the Madison Press and a freelance Christian writer. He attended Southwest Grace Brethren Church and Darbydale Church of the Nazarene. He was a former minister at Brokensword and Lykens. He also served on the mission field in Brazil.
He was a graduate of Asbury College and studied at Ashland Seminary. Visitation will be held 2-4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 28, 2007 at Southwest Grace Brethren Church, 3989 Neff Rd., Grove City, Ohio, with the funeral service following at 4 with Pastor Tony Webb officiating. Interment will be held at Mansfield Memorial Park, Ontario, Ohio.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Southwest Grace Brethren or Darbydale Church of the Nazarene. Arrangements entrusted to Newcomer Funeral Home, Southwest Chapel.
Messages of condolence may be left at www.NewcomerFamily.com.
Several pieces of Boggan’s writing can be found on the Southwest church’s website at www.southwest.org. Here is a short excerpt from one of those pieces:
Reflections on cancer at 50
To hear one of my doctors talk, I¹ll live to be 100. He obviously hasn¹t checked my belt size or my cholesterol count.
Of course, he wasn’t talking about the health of my heart.
He was talking about the knob below my right ear which started out (in my fancies) as infection from a defunct tooth and moved through several identities before being pegged as cancer.
Surgery and radiation will send it packing, I’m told. I’ll never be bothered by it again.
The only thing which is unnerving about all that is the professional sympathy. When two doctors in one day pat you on the shoulder while wearing kind smiles, it makes you wonder.
It also makes you think about the big “what if.”
Sooner or later, of course, the big one will hit, whatever form the big one takes when it takes me.
Even if Doc is right and the calendar reads “2057” at the time, at some point, from whatever cause, my heart monitor will go flat with a long screech and a bunch of people in white coats and cool rubber gloves will step back from the table, sadly shaking their heads.
The thing I¹ve found odd through this process has been my state of mind as expressed by the question, “Do I want that to happen now, or later?”
Don¹t get me wrong. Life is good. I’m married to a wonderful woman and my son, at 10, makes me proud every day. I enjoy my work, my friends, life as I have it.
But I also believe something better awaits. When the pastor tosses a clod of earth on my coffin I won’t be there. I’ll be in a stupendously better place, from which I¹ll never leave.