By M.H. Cavanaugh
Christian Action League
August 3, 2021
House Speaker Tim Moore released a statement that summarized the sentiments of many legislators, saying:
“I am heartbroken and devastated by the sudden loss of my friend and colleague Representative Jerry Carter. Representative Carter was an extraordinary legislator and a devoted husband to his wife, who he loved dearly. He was the chaplain of the NC State Highway Patrol and was a man of deep faith and faithful prayer. He was the founder and pastor of Reidsville Baptist Church, and he was deeply passionate about serving Rockingham County and his constituents back home. We will feel Jerry’s loss deeply at the NC General Assembly, and my prayers are with Jerry’s family as they grieve this great loss in the days ahead.”
Carter’s passing was mentioned during the Council of State meeting. Gov. Roy Copper started the meeting by announcing Carter’s sudden death. Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson said, “It’s a devastating loss for his community. He’s a fixture in his community. He’s touched many lives.”
Last month, the Greensboro News and Record reported that Carter had been hospitalized and treated at Duke University Medical Center for a rare gastrointestinal disorder, idiopathic myointimal hyperplasia of mesenteric veins, or IMHMV.
The News and Record said the ailment was first discovered in 1991, and only about a dozen cases of IMHMV have been written extensively about it in medical journals. Very little is known about its cause, only that it sometimes mimics inflammatory bowel disease.
Carter was elected in 2018 and re-elected in 2020. He represented District 65 and was currently serving on the following committees:
Appropriations, Child Fatality Task Force, Families, Children, and Aging Policy, Health, Homeland Security, Military and Veterans Affairs, Joint Legislative Committee on Local Government, Judiciary 2, and a subcommittee on Local Government – Land Use, Planning and Development.
In a Facebook post, Rep. Kelly Hastings (R-Cleveland) had high praise for Carter, saying, “After almost 11 years in Raleigh, I’ve seen a lot of egos, people with “alpha male” syndrome, people who always want to be the “cutest” cats in the room, people who are consumed with themselves and their appearances of power, and people who want to belittle and destroy others to elevate themselves, but Rep. Jerry Carter did not seem to have a problem with any of these. He was one of the best and most patriotic members of the General Assembly.”
Rev. Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian Action League, noted:
“There’s a running joke at the General Assembly where lawmakers warn each other, saying, ‘You don’t want Rev. Creech to come to your office. If he does, you know something is wrong with your bill. If possible, you want to avoid him visiting you. Of course, it’s a bit of a joke because everybody gets a little nervous if the preacher walks in. But this much I can say, Rep. Jerry Carter was never the kind of legislator who needed a visit from the preacher. He was a great preacher. He was a brother in Christ. He operated out of a strong Christian worldview. Plus, he was stalwart. It’s difficult to understand the ways of the Lord sometimes. It seems that we needed Jerry so badly at this juncture in history.”
In reference to Carter’s passing, Rev. Creech offered the following prayer:
“Lord of all history, who has raised up prophets and kings, statesman and leaders, to direct the people according to your will, we pause in gratitude for your servant Jerry Carter. Through good times and bad, in prosperity and adversity, in conflict and peace, he was vigilant in representing your purposes first. He was devoted to supporting legislation for the common welfare, sensitive to the needs for righteousness and integrity.
“We commend his keeping to you, O Lord, trusting your grace, mercy, love, and holy character. You are perfect in all your ways. We do not know what the future holds, but we know who holds the future. So, we shall not be afraid.
“Bless Rep. Carter’s wife and family to be strengthened by the many promises of your Word. May they be comforted with the pride they share in his exemplary life, in the assurance of the Great Resurrection Day, and with true understanding and sympathy from friends. In the name of Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.”
At the writing of this news story, funeral arrangements had yet to be announced. Check back here later for an update.