Reverend Russell L. Branch, 77, of Columbia, passed away peacefully at his home on November 8, 2020. He was born on January 11, 1943 in Mt. Pleasant, Henry County, Iowa, the youngest of five children, the son of the late Harry V. and Letha C. (Wilson) Branch.
Russell was in the United States Army from 1961 to 1964 where he served overseas in France and Germany. He was a 5-ton tractor and trailer truck driver. In 1981 he entered the ministry, graduating from St. Paul School of Theology in July of 1986. He was ordained as a Deacon in the Methodist East Conference on May 22, 1987. He served in the Missouri East Conference: New Florence Circuit from May 1981-January 1987, Wayland Circuit from January 1987 to June 1994, Viburnum Circuit from June 1994 – June 1997, Hermann Circuit from June 1997-June 2004, New Bloomfield Circuit from June 2004 to June 2005. He has also been a member of various organizations over his lifetime.
Rev. Branch married JaNeanne Stookesberry on August 7, 1965. They had two children: Jeffrey Heath and Nichole Leigh Branch. On March 17, 1978 he married June E. (Barratt) Cameron Branch, who had 3 children: Gail E. Cameron, Barry R. Cameron, John M. Cameron.
He is survived by his children: Jeffrey (Crystal) Branch, Nichole Branch (John) Ackerman; step-children: Gail Cameron, Barry Cameron, John (Susan) Cameron; brothers: Gary Branch, Lester Branch; sister: Geraldine Branch. Nine grandchildren: Cody (Erin) Branch, Courtney (Jake) Collins, Colby Branch, Alley (Mateo) Dias, Samantha (Trevor) Reeves, Joey (Michelle) Cameron, Taylor (Kate) Cameron, Madison (Tucker) Whitworth, Logan (Lauren) Frett. Eight Great grandchildren: Jaymie, Harlee and Timber Collins, Braxton Dias, Oliver and Brooklyn Reeves, Cameron Whitworth and Emmie Cameron. He was preceded in death by his wife June and his parents Harry and Letha Branch and brother Larry Branch.
A memorial service will be held at a later date. He requested that if you want to make a donation in his memory to please do so at the Rainbow House, 1611 Towne Dr, Columbia, MO 65202.
Arrangements are under the direction of Parker-Millard Funeral Service and Crematory; 12 East Ash Street, Columbia, Missouri, 65203; (573) 449-4153. Condolences may be left online for the family at www.ParkerMillard.com