Tributes, reflections, and comments from Foy Valentine's colleagues, friends, students, and others…
|Helen Moss – follower of his life's work; friend of brother, Jim Valentine
I am thankful for the life and influences of Foy Valentine. He has stood up for the principles and beliefs that have sustained us through the trials of life in the Baptist church. His faith rises above the unimportant divisions and leads us to the central love of Jesus Christ. I thank him for the publication of Christian Ethics Today; it is so significant in leading us to higher living.
|Babs Baugh – friend and admirer
Foy was the definition of "ethics" to me. He was the first person I ever knew who actually practiced ethics on a daily basis — and yet always had a cheerful word of encouragement for each of us. I will be forever grateful to his Sunday School class for giving him the gift of the trip to the BWA with us this year — for it truly was a gift to us to get to be with him and enjoy his sense of humor and watch him have a wonderful time with his old friends. Thank you, Park Cities; thank you, Foy and thank you, Lord for those beautiful memories
|Gordon Atkinson – Hero worship from afar
I "met" Foy Valentine in seminary while researching Southern Baptists' responses to the bombing of a Baptist church in Birmingham in 1963. I was shocked to find that there was no response at all, not even from the Alabama State Baptist paper published in Birmingham.
From there I did some more looking around and found a voice crying in the wilderness of the sin of my own people. Foy Valentine denouncing racism from the floor of the Southern Baptist Convention in 1968, I believe. He wasn't alone in this, but it was a lonely and courageous thing to do.
From that time forward, Foy Valentine has been a symbol of strong New Testament prophecy for me. Someday I hope that my grandchildren will know that I was willing to stand for right and righteousness, no matter what the cost may be. I don't know if I can ever live up to that lofty goal, but Foy Valentine inspires me to try.
I join a host of others in mourning Foy's death. He was more than a leading ethicist to me and my family. He was a family friend. My brother, Dwight, called me last night to give me the sad news. I think I have told you this before but our friendship goes back to the 1940s when Dwight and Foy were in seminary together in Ft. Worth. Dwight, Foy and two other seminary friends would come to our house, which was near the seminary, and have dinner on Friday nights and then sing until late at night.
I was about twelve years old and went to bed many night hearing them sing "I'll Fly Away" in four-part harmony. My dad, who was superintendent (the first) of city missions in Ft. Worth, would exchange teasing comments much of the evening. Years later, Dad would reminisce about those wonderful times. Dwight and Emma and Foy and Mary Frances remained close friends over the years even thought separated for years at a time because of missionary service. After retirement, Dwight and Emma would join Foy and his family at Red River, New Mexico where the Valentines had a cabin. They enjoyed vacationing together for several summers, until about three or four years ago when Emma's health no longer permitted the trip.
An era is over and we mourn, "not as those who have no hope," but as friends who have lost their brother. Dwight is the only remaining mortal member of that quartet, who will someday sing again to the glory of God for all eternity.
|Betsy Simpson Stiles – Friend and "father figure" – his daughter Jean and I were best friends in high school
On so very many wonderful occasions, I spent the night in the Valentines' home in Nashville while growing up there. Jean (Dr. V's oldest daughter) and I never missed family prayer time called by Dr. Valentine. A life is influenced by times like those (even if it took years to be realized). I have felt so loved and accepted by this man and his family since the 1960's. All I could do was love 'em right back.
|Grady B. Waggener – I feel like a friend after recently reading "Whatsoever Things Are Lovely"
My Bible Study Class at First Baptist Richardson made this book available to us last year. What a wonderful book on so many down to earth subjects and references to which I could relate. The title of his book from the scriptures was one of my father's favorite verses. I was deeply saddened last night at Prayer Meeting to learn of his passing on to be with the Lord. May his writings and the many other contributions of his life continue to bless others as this book has blessed me.
|Mike Taylor – Family Friends
We called Foy, among ourselves, "Uncle Foy". He and Mary Louise are considered family, though we haven't lived close to them for years, excepting occasional rendezvous in Red River, NM. He conducted our daughter's wedding and counseled us about family, relationships, and on occasion, theology.
We all knew that to be around Foy as friends was a privilege to be relished. His love of the flora and fauna of New Mexico infected all who were around him. His caring for our family and his old peer and colleague, our Dad, Bill Grindstaff, gave us comfort after Dad was gone.
Foy, daughter Jean, and my wife (Janie) and I shared a final fellowship feast with him, which he served in his cabin: one-and-a-half eggs apiece, some baken, some biscuits stubbornly refusing to rise, and two or three hours of easy conversation.
It was to be our good bye.
And, I think Foy and I both knew it.
I thank God for the gift he was to our family, and how he deepened my faith even as he stretched my intellect