Woody Herman Hersey was born October 21, 1944 to Clarence Hersey and Othella Erby-Hersey in Morrilton, Arkansas. Woody was the third of eight children. Woody passed away on Saturday February 13, 2021 at Research Medical Center. He was proceeded in death by both his parents; son, Marcus Hersey; brother, Willie Hersey; sisters, Joyce Hersey and Marcellious Hersey.
Woody attended Sarah Clark Elementary School, graduating from L.W. Sullivan High School. He was a member of the L.W. Sullivan Tigers football team. After graduating from high school, he relocated to Kansas City, Missouri where he met Delores Clark whom he later married. From that union four children were born, Woody Jr., Anthony, Andrew, and Marcus. Later, in his life Woody met a “special love”, Sheryl Ezeff, along with her children and granddaughter, who enjoyed being with him and called him Papa. Woody worked as a part time manager for McDonald’s for many years as a young adult then transitioned to working for King Louie for fifty-four years. He retired in management at the end of his career.
Woody accepted Christ at an early age at St. Matthew #2 Baptist Church, under the leadership of the late Pastor E. Vaughn. He sang in the choir and on special occasions he would sing alongside his mother and other siblings. He attended St. Matthew #3 Baptist Church in Blackwell, Arkansas, the home church of his grandfather and grandmother, John and Lillian Erby. After relocating to Kansas City, Missouri, Woody became a member of Morning Star Baptist Church under the leadership of the late Pastor H.C. Eason and current Pastor John Modest Miles. Woody was an active and faithful member of the Mass Choir and Male Chorus. He drove the church bus, picking up members for Sunday School and church services. He later accepted his calling into the Ministry under the leadership of Pastor Miles.
Woody was an avid golfer who learned the game as a caddy at the Morrilton Country Club. His brothers and nephews all became golf fans because of him. Woody won numerous golfing tournaments throughout the Kansas City area. One of his most enjoyable golf tournaments was playing with his brother, Willie, at the Nowata, Oklahoma Golf Tournament. They led for most of the tournament but fell to second place to attend to a family emergency. He enjoyed being an accomplished golfer who did not fit the stereotypical golfer image. For that reason, Tiger Woods was his favorite golfer to watch on Sunday afternoon while talking on the phone with his brother. Woody was a skilled outdoorsman, a masterful gardener, and landscaper. He loved to give advice on how to properly manicure your lawn or supply you with tips to get your garden to flourish. Hunting and fishing were some of his other beloved pastimes. He would often share stories of his triumphs and impart his skills to his nieces and nephews. Woody was also a great cook and enjoyed any opportunity to show you how it was done – right! Even though Woody never went to college, he provided for his family and worked hard so his sons could have the opportunity to further their education and accomplish their dreams. If that meant sacrificing his needs, wants, or time, he was willing to make that sacrifice to ensure they had a quality education. He cherished his sons and their accomplishments - one of his greatest joys was watching them grow into men flourishing with life.
He leaves to cherish, his three sons, Woody Hersey Jr. of Kansas City, MO, Anthony Hersey (Adrienne) of Charlotte, North Carolina, and Andrew Hersey (Jasmine) of San Francisco, CA; sisters, Mattie Johnson and Janice Hersey of Kansas City, MO; brothers, Clyde Hersey of Kansas City, MO, and Glenn Hersey (Wanda) of Little Rock, AR; one sister-in-law Gail Hersey of Charlotte, North Carolina; his grandchildren (Leonidas, Swayze, Mathias, and Santana Hersey, Addison Hersey, Andrew Hersey, Jr.), his special love, Sheryl Ezeff, and host of special nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends.
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