Pastors' Memoirs

Ellis Marcel Lacey, 1907-1994

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The Reverend Ellis Marcel Lacey was born on January 27,1907, in Clark's Gap, Virginia. Ellis was the fourth son born to Elnora and William Lacey. After reaching adulthood, Ellis moved to the Washington, D.C., area, where he pursued a number of vocations.

On December 14, 1935, Ellis married Ferol Aulabaugh. The Laceys resided in Arlington, Virginia, and were blessed with four children. Ellis and Ferol moved their young family to Falls Church, where they joined St Luke's United Methodist Church.

Ellis received his call to the ministry while a member of St. Luke's. With the assistance of the Rev. Jerry Fink, Ellis became a Methodist-approved supply pastor. In 1963, Ellis accepted his first appointment at King George Methodist Church, in King George, Virginia. In 1968, he was ordained an elder in the United Methodist Church.

Ellis subsequently served at Shady Grove United Methodist Church in Spotsylvania, and at Dranesville United Methodist Church in Dranesville. In 1975, Ellis retired from full-time ministry, and he and Ferol moved their home to Spotsylvania. Not one to be idle, Ellis continued to serve the Lord at Olivet United Methodist Church in Spotsylvania, and at Liberty United Methodist Church in Bealeton.

In addition to his devotion to the Lord, Ellis devoted his life to community service. He was a Boy Scout leader for many years and president of the Herndon High School Parents Band Boosters (better known as "Band-Aid"). He was an active member of the Democratic Party, serving a number of years on the executive committee, and campaigning for candidates for office in Spotsylvania County. Ellis spent many years as a special deputy to the Spotsylvania County sheriff and served as their chaplain.

In addition to his wife of 58 years, Ellis is survived by his four children: Lynda Louise Kirstein, Lila Lea Browning, Lauren Lynne Garnett, and Richard Ellis Lacey. He leaves 12 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

Ellis died of cancer in his home on July 13,1994. On Sunday, July 17,1994, in Fredericksburg United Methodist Church a memorial service was held. Family, friends and ministerial friends joined together in a Service of Worship and Celebration. Those sharing in this service were the Rev. Steve Young, the Rev. James Turner, the Rev. William Logan, the Rev. William Mahon, the Rev. Harry Spear and the Rev. Henry Riley. In the sharing of Words and Remembrance, the life of Ellis Marcel Lacey was well remembered, and his love for the Lord and the people for whom he was a Shepherd was celebrated. The gathered community of faith stood and sang:
"And God will raise you up on eagle's wings,
Bear you on the breath of dawn,
Make you to shine like the sun,
And hold you in the palm of God's hand."

- William F. Mahon



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Background photos courtesy of VDOT.

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