An Illinois church is grieving the loss of Randy Stover, a retired contractor who was killed in a one-car crash Nov. 9 in Phoenix, Arizona. The accident involved a missions team from Ten Mile Baptist Church in McLeansboro, Illinois. Three others were seriously injured and remain hospitalized in Arizona pending surgeries.
A team of seven was enroute to Sonora, Mexico, along with a team from Foothills Baptist Church Phoenix to build a house for a needy family. Stover, 65, reportedly had a medical emergency while driving, which led to the rollover crash. The injured victims were in the car with him. A second vehicle carrying the rest of the team was not involved in the collision. Ten Mile pastor Jacob Gray solicited prayer for the hospitalized team members “in the days and weeks ahead.”
“He was excited to take our team from here and help,” Gray said, “to bless them and show them that they’re loved.”
Known for ministry service
This was Stover’s 10th missions trip in a long ministry of service. “He just had a heart for the Lord … had a heart for missions … just could help anyone,” Gray said. Stover had previously volunteered with teams to build houses in Mexico and Nicaragua.
Stover and his family were members of Foothills Church when they lived in Phoenix. Foothills had conducted several house-building trips to the community in Mexico, and Stover facilitated joint mission projects between the Arizona church and Ten Mile Church.
After the fatal accident, members of Foothills continued the journey and completed the construction project. At the site they laid a cement cornerstone written in Spanish, in memory of Stover.
In the meantime, Foothills church members have been caring for the Illinois families who traveled to Phoenix to attend their injured family.