He was 62.
Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Wednesday at Eastside Baptist Church. Burial will be in Walker Memory Gardens.
Lucky Teague, J.D. Dickerson and David Byrd will officiate.
Teague said Monday that Bailey was more than just a fellow minister.
“I loved J.L. so much. He was such a treasured friend,” Teague said. “He was just one of the finest, most pleasant and loving man here in the county. He loved his church and the people. He loved everybody, and if he could help people he would. His friendship was treasured by many people and certainly by me. I thought the world of him, and I’m going to miss him terribly.”
Tommy Parrish, a longtime member at Eastside Baptist, said Bailey was a friend prior to becoming pastor at Eastside.
“We’ve been friends for more than 40 years,” said Parrish, who played softball with Bailey years ago and helped bring Bailey to Eastside. “He’s been like family to us all these years. I can tell you that I’ve never met a more Godly man or a more loving person than J.L. Bailey. He loved our church so much.”
Dickerson, who will help Teague and Byrd conduct funeral services for Bailey, said he not only lost a fellow minister but a friend and family member. He and Bailey were cousins.
“He’s been very instrumental to me over the past 18 years since I’ve been in the ministry,” said Dickerson, now pastor at Blooming Grove Baptist Church. “The thing about J.L. is that he always found time to help the young preachers coming up. He was always trying to reach the young pastors and help them the best he could in doing God’s work. He always gave an encouraging word. You just don’t see a lot of that now.”
Bailey loved everyone, Dickerson said.
“He loved people, and he loved helping people,” he said, adding that Bailey would perform all kind of duties around the church, from cutting grass and sweeping floors to cleaning the bathrooms. “He was a blue collar kind of pastor. I’m really going to miss him.”
Bailey was preceded in death by his parents, Jessie Bailey and Edith Dickerson Bailey; and one sister, Darlene Morris.
He is survived by his wife, Linda Carol Bailey; three daughters, Cheryl McAllister (Joey), Lisa Hanvey (Chris), and Brooke Pullins (William); one son, Brian Bailey (Regina); seven grandchildren, Cameron and Cade McAllister, Carter Hanvey, Sawyer and Ashlan Pullins, Ethan Bailey and Kaitlyn York; two sisters, Deborah Peake (Bobby) and Wanda Aaron; and one brother, Donald Joe Bailey (Pam).
Pallbearers will be Joey McAllister, Chris Hanvey, William Pullins, Brian Bailey, Donald Joe Bailey and Roy Dickerson.