Former conference president dies
BATON ROUGE, La. ––Ofney Ellis, 93, former president of Louisiana Conference UM Men, died Oct. 11 following a fall. Ofney was a fellow in the John Wesley Society, a life member, and a faithful legacy builder of the General Commission on UM Men. After graduating from Ponchatoula (La.) High School and spending six months in the Civilian Conservation Corps, he attended Southeastern Louisiana College (now Southeastern) for two years where he was president of the YMCA and associate editor of the college newspaper. He also was elected secretary of the Methodist Student Organization.
He married Bessie Harris of Ponchatoula in 1939 and moved to New Orleans, and worked there and in Baton Rouge. In spite of the fact that the couple had two sons, Ofney was drafted into the Army Air Corps. He was assigned to the Eighth Air Force in Great Britain where he flew 35 missions over heavily fortified Germany and other European targets. He earned the Air Medal with four oak leaf clusters and the European Theater Ribbon with four battle stars.
After returning home, he helped organize and was elected the first president of a men’s organization at Winbourne (La.) Methodist Church. He later served as the first president of Baton Rouge District United Methodist Men and was the fourth president of the Louisiana Conference United Methodist Men. He continued to be active in local, district, and conference United Methodist Men as well as in his local church for the rest of his life. His son, Clyde, serves as president of Baton Rouge District UM Men.
He is survived by two sons, seven grandchildren, and eight great grandchildren.