Rev. Wilbur M. Milbourn, age 93, of West Baden Springs, formerly of Birdseye, was called to his eternal home at 4:06 P.M., EDT., on Wednesday, June 15, 2016, at Springs Valley Meadows, French Lick, Indiana.
He was born November 3, 1922, in St. Joseph, Missouri to Frank and Julia (Menges) Milbourn. He was preceded in death by his parents; and infant brother, Frank James Milbourn; step father, Rev. John Buford; step brothers, Donald and Garel Buford.
During high school, he was actively involved in music and part of All String Orchestra playing the guitar, bass, piano or mandolin. The group played at the 1939 New York World Fair. After graduation, he attended Guard Business College and later decided to travel to New York City where he played the accordion, of which he was a master, on stage in various venues.
He entered the US Army Air Corps and climbed the ranks to Sgt. Milbourn where he served for three years until his discharge at the end of WWII. Not long after, he met and married Mildred Bayer, from Birdseye, IN.
Wilbur and Mildred along with Rev. Harold Bayer traveled for two years in evangelistic ministry. Later, Rev. Bayer married Juanita Hemphill and the four continued the evangelical ministry. Rev. Milbourn felt God calling him to start the first apostolic church in St. Joseph, Missouri. Today the Pentecostals of St. Joseph are still in that city.
In 1965, Rev. Milbourn became the Dean of Music and taught Biblical Studies at Pentecostal Bible Institute in Tupelo, Mississippi where he served until 1967. He returned to full time evangelistic ministry until 1973.
Rev. and Mrs. Milbourn moved to Clearwater, Florida in 1987 to pastor a new church of 19 people. Soon the average attendance was in the 90s. He and his wife had to come back to Birdseye not long after the church’s growth to care for his mother.
He and his wife began attending church in French Lick to help their daughter and son-in-law in the church that they pastored. Even though he was advancing in age, he accepted the pastorate at Oakridge Church from 1994 to 2002.
Rev. Milbourn took his calling to the ministry very seriously and gave everything that he had to the work of God. He has mentored many men in the ministry as well as men behind bars who were baptized and filled with God’s spirit. Some never experienced freedom in this world but left for a better place free from chains on their souls because he took time to care.
Truly he fought a good fight and kept the Faith.
Rev. Wilbur Milbourn is survived by:
Mildred Anna Milbourn of West Baden Springs, IN;
Barry (wife: Jan) Milbourn of Bloomington, Indiana,
Rodney Milbourn of Nashville, Tennessee,
Mrs. Velda (husband: Kern) Qualkenbush of West Baden Springs, Indiana,
by (6) grandchildren, and (7) great grandchildren.
Funeral services for Rev. Wilburn Milbourn will be held at 1:00 a.m., E.D.T., on Saturday, June 18, 2016, at New Life United Pentecostal Church in Huntingburg with burial to follow at Birdseye Cemetery. Reverend Charles E. Carr will officiate at the funeral service. V.F.W. Post #2366 Memorial Detail assisted by Evansville Honors Team will conduct military graveside rites.
Friends may call for visitation at the Nass & Son Funeral Home in Huntingburg from 4:00-8:00 p.m., on Friday and from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. service time at the church on Saturday. Memorial contributions may be made to Bharosa Ghar Mission and Orphanage, India. Condolences may be shared online at: www.nassandson.com