Rev. Joseph Edward Pratt

April 16, 1929 ~ September 24, 2021 (age 92)


A son given in birth to Sallie Mae Nelms (mother) and Henry Pratt (father) in Sylacauga, Talladega County.

Growing up he attended East Highland High in Sylacauga, Alabama where he was introduced to music and gained a love for the trumpet. Later, he attended Paul Lawrence Dunbar High in Dayton, Ohio. Upon returning to Alabama, he united with Mary "Polly" Hollis in marriage on February 2, 1949 and celebrated continued unity in marriage for 50 years in 1999. 

In this union they were blessed with eight children.  Five preceded him in death.  He confessed to Christ at an early age and joined St. Paul AME church in the late 70s.  He answered his call into the ministry under Reverend George Stafford, Minister of St. Paul AME Church, and Elder Holmes, Presiding Elder. 

He was ordained into the ministry under Bishop Cousins.  Reverend Pratt was assigned several churches in Alabama: St. Joseph's AME Church in Talladega, Frison Chapel in Hoover, St. James AME in Columbiana, St. James in Tuskegee, and St. John AME in Socapatoy.  He continued to answer the call of ministry for 21 years until he reached the age of 75 and retired under the AME Church Guidelines.  

He also retired from Avondale Mills after 21 years and retired from driving the bus for the Sylacauga City School District. After losing his wife of 60 years in 2008 he later married Ms. Elsie Looney-Vaughn in March of 2013. They moved to Detroit for five years until Elsie Pratt was promoted to heaven.  

After Elsie’s passing, he returned home to live with his son Herbert who passed in 2020 and his last days were spent living with his daughters, Shirley and Verleta, and traveling to and from Arizona visiting his grandchildren and great-grandchildren.  He was active in the community as a poll worker and a member of the Retired Teachers Association and a member of the Ministerial Association in Talladega County.  He also attended the Rushing Springs Theology School.  Earlier in his life he often performed with a band called the Snappy Seven Band.

Joseph Edward Pratt departed this life on September 24, 2021 at Goodwater Healthcare. He leaves to cherish his memory three daughters Shirley Parks of Sylacauga, Verleta Baker of Childersburg, and Wanda Jackson (Clarence) of Kettering, Ohio; a brother Samuel Jackson of Talladega, Al and sister Bonnie S. Tatum of Owings Mills, MDS; Fourteen grandchildren, Nineteen great-grandchildren and seven great-great-grandchildren. 



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October 1, 2021

1:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Grace Memorial Chapel Funeral Home
220 East 3rd Street
Sylacauga, AL 35150

Celebration of Life
October 2, 2021

12:00 PM
St. Paul AME Church
894 Prater St.
Sylacauga, AL 35150

Interment following funeral service
October 2, 2021

Macedonia Memorial Gardens
224 Macedonia Circle
Goodwater, AL 35072

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