Remembering Reverend Benjamin Booth: A Legacy of Service and Innovation in Alabama

Remembering Reverend Benjamin Booth: Rev. Benjamin Stephen Booth, who served as the president of Talladega’s Presbyterian Home for Children for two decades, passed away at his home in Mentone. Rev. Booth, who led the organization from 1981 to 2001, was 89 years old.

Before becoming the tenth president of the Presbyterian Home for Children (PHFC), Rev. Booth served as a Presbyterian minister PC(USA) in pastorates in Illinois, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. He was also the executive director of the Presbyterian Children’s Home of the Highlands in Virginia. His commitment to serving children and youth in need in a residential setting began when he worked as a houseparent at the Ward Home for Children in the 1960s.

Born in Concord, Va., Rev. Booth graduated from Leechburg High School in 1952. After serving in the U.S. Army, he completed his education at Grove City College, the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, and earned his Doctor of Ministry from Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, Ga. Additionally, he received an honorary doctorate from the University of West Alabama in Livingston.

Rev. Booth had a strong interest in aviation and was a flight instructor at Isbell Field Airport in Fort Payne, logging 6,000 hours of flight time and earning several pilot ratings.

Under Rev. Booth’s leadership at PHFC, major renovations were completed, and key ministries, such as Ascension Leadership Academy and the Thrift Store, were launched. His presidency brought innovative ideas, outreach to Presbyterian churches across the state, and an expanded ministry to meet the demands and limitations of the times.

Rev. Booth is survived by his wife Susan, who worked with the Home’s music program, touring the state’s Presbyterian churches with children to present music programs and generate support for the Home. A Celebration of Life Service is scheduled for December 2 at First Presbyterian Church of Fort Payne, with visitation beginning at noon. The family has requested donations be made to the charity of choice in lieu of flowers.

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