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Church's first couple celebrate 60 years together
Leary and Elder Henry Frasier smile for a photo at their 60th wedding anniversary party in April. - photo by Photo provided.

Diamonds are a girl’s best friend? If you ask Leary Frasier, she says her husband, Elder Henry Frasier, is her best friend.

After 60 years of wedded bliss, they are still in love and enjoying each other.

On April 16, family and friends gathered at the Pleasant Grove AME Church Social Hall in Hinesville to enjoy an evening of celebration with the Frasiers.

Surrounded and entertained by their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, the couple made a grand entrance.

Despite humble beginnings, the Frasiers have become examples to others. Their years of marriage and ministry have been an inspiration to many. During the celebration, family, friends, clergy and politicians voiced appreciation.

Elder Frasier has been in the ministry more than 40 years. He served as a pastor for 28 years, 22 at Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Hinesville. He subsequently became the presiding elder of the West Savannah District, where he served for eight years.

After retiring as presiding elder in 2008, Frasier was called out of retirement to be pastor of St. Thomas AME Church in Walthourville in 2013. He serves as a spiritual father to many in the ministry, not only in the AME church, but other denominations, as well.

Elder Frasier has also worked outside his church. He was a founding members of the Liberty County Martin Luther King Jr. Committee and Liberty County Ministerial Alliance, and was its president for 10 years. Frasier was also president of the Liberty County Emancipation Proclamation Committee for 15 years.

He was mayor of Walthourville for eight years and a councilman for nine years. Currently, he is an honorary member of the Eleven Black Men of Liberty County Committee, member of the Area Agency on Aging Advisory Council, Democratic Committee, and a lifetime NAACP member. He was instrumental in getting a street in Hinesville named after King.

Even in their golden years and pastoring, the elder preaches at various churches in and outside the community.

They also share their bounty with others.

"I have peach, pear, apple and fig trees and grapevines. I also have sugar cane each year," he said. "Mother Frasier is known for her cake baking and canning, which she graciously shares."

Known as the singing couple, the Frasiers love to sing and have passed their talents on. Their grandchildren honored them at the celebration by singing "Down at the Cross."

"On Sunday morning, our grandfather would gather us for prayer at 8 a.m., and he always sang this song," Alex Works said.

At the conclusion of the ceremony, the Frasiers blessed the attendees at their celebration with the song, "Let Me Live by the Side of the Road," by the late Rev. Julius Cheeks.

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