Tenn. Baptist summer missionary dies in accident
    June 17 2010 by Lonnie Wilkey, Baptist and Reflector

    STANDISH, Maine — Tennessee Baptist summer missionary Palmer Maphet, 20, of Mount Juliet, was killed June 16 and three other Tennessee students and their supervisor were injured after the car they were traveling in was struck by another vehicle near Portland.

    Maphet, a sophomore at Tennessee Tech University in Cookeville, was serving on a travel team sent out by Tennessee Baptist Collegiate Ministry. The team was traveling to minister at Laconia Motorcycle Week in Laconia, N.H., when the accident occurred.

    Three other students also were injured: Leah Hardwick, Jackson, a student at Jackson State Community College; Justin Owens, Union City, a student at the University of Tennessee, Martin; and Legon Craighead, Gordonsville, a student at Union University, Jackson.

    Also injured was Marilyn McClendon, the students’ supervisor who was driving the car.

    Owens, Craighead and McClendon were treated at Maine Medical Center and released the same day. Hardwick was held overnight and expected to be released on June 17.

    According to a news report by the Portland (Maine) News, a Toyota Tacoma pickup truck, driven by Paula Haddow, 63, of Standish, crossed into the lane and struck McClendon’s car.

    “Palmer Maphet was an exceptional Christian man,” said Bill Choate, director of Baptist Collegiate Ministries (BCM) for the Tennessee Baptist Convention (TBC). “He will obviously be missed by so very many.”

    Maphet was very involved in the BCM at Tennessee Tech, according to BCM director John Aaron Matthew. After the accident, Matthew posted on Facebook that Palmer had served as team leader of his freshman spiritual growth team and this past spring began his new position on the upperclassmen discipleship team.

    He also was “preparing to reach his dorm for Christ as a community group leader,” Matthew wrote.

    “Palmer lived a life that was not wasted because he lived his life running hard after Christ in an effort to know God and to make Him known,” Matthew also observed on his Facebook page. Matthew asked for prayer for the Maphet family and for his summer mission team in Maine.

    “Please pray that Palmer’s life still continues to bring glory to God even in death.”

    Choate noted that each summer Tennessee BCM sends students to New England to serve with Southern Baptist churches in reaching out into their communities. He noted that McClendon, who was leading this team, “is one of BCM’s very best partners and local missionary supervisors, working with us for many years to engage Tennessee students in ministry in a secular culture.”

    McClendon, a former staff member at Highland Baptist Church in Tullahoma, currently serves on the staff at SouthCoast Community Church in Scarborough, a suburb of Portland. Stacy Murphree, TBC collegiate missions specialist, was traveling to Maine on Thursday to be with the remaining BCM summer missionaries.    
    6/17/2010 9:02:00 AM by Lonnie Wilkey, Baptist and Reflector | with 0 comments

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