More than 250 community members gathered at Silver City Baptist Church on Wednesday, June 9, to celebrate the life of community leader Roger Slaton, who passed away earlier this week.
The church’s choir sang, and several local pastors recounted memories of Slaton and their time with him. Themes of faith, loyalty and kindness were woven throughout each pastor’s speech, and every speaker attested to the impact that Slaton made on the people around him.
In his comments at the funeral, Rev. Brody Hughes talked about traveling on mission trips with Slaton and about how Slaton was always unafraid to share his faith with other people. Hughes said that this was a way that Slaton made a lasting impact on countless lives, including every person in attendance at the funeral.
“Roger Slaton was my friend,” Hughes said. “I wanted to come and tell you all about all the wonderful things that my friend Roger Slaton has done, and then I realized that each one of you would not be here if you did not know the same.”
Russell Burt, pastor of Silver City Baptist Church echoed Hughes, saying that Slaton has left a lasting impact on everyone he touched.
"I never saw a man work harder in the church than Roger Slaton,” Burt said. “If a revival service was going on, he was gonna be there; if the church needed a piano player, he was gonna be there; when somebody needed something in the community, he was gonna be there; when the girls needed a basketball coach, he was gonna be there; whatever need presented itself, he rose to the challenge and said 'I will go’.”
Burt said that Slaton’s attitude of giving to others extended not just to his church family, but to the entire Dawsonville community he spent his whole life in.
“He was no doubt a man that gave everything he had not just to his church but to his community,” Burt said. “So many of us are better because of what he’s poured into our lives and I’m so thankful for that.”
In his comments about Slaton, Rev. Stephen Davis said that this giving spirit was just one of the many ways Slaton supported those around him. Davis said that, because Slaton gave so much of himself to the church and local community, he was blessed.
“He had a touch on his life, it was evident being around him and his presence that you could just feel the Lord,” Davis said. “Have you ever been around anybody that prospered more than Roger? Everything he touched, God blessed him and He blessed him so well, and I thank the Lord for the legacy of Roger Slaton.”
Rev. Chris Gilbert said that this legacy made a huge difference in his life and the lives of his whole family.
“When you meet people like Roger Slaton, your life is never the same; I’m thankful for the love of our family and for the love of a man who had a heart for the Lord Jesus Christ,” Gilbert said.