MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) – Family members and the faith community are mourning the death of a Memphis pastor.

Pastor Willie Boyd died Saturday evening, in a car accident involving a single vehicle.

He leaves behind a wife and three young children and the congregation he led for nearly two years.

The Sunday morning service at Greenwood CME Church was spirit-led and prayer-driven.

“I will tell you all that he had a heart for this church,” said a friend and church member.

“We understand Lord God that this is your plan, even in times like this when we don’t understand,” Clarence Scott said during a prayer.

Church members reunited after the heartbreaking loss.

“I was devastated,” said associate pastor Dr. Tyrone Davis. Such a young man, just 44, I think his birthday is tomorrow, he will be 45.

Friends say Boyd was a loving leader who faced challenges head-on and a family man who focused on the positive.

During the Sunday service, a friend said Boyd was “a perfect example of a classic man, a good father and a husband”.

Many pews were empty on Sunday, but for those who attended Sunday morning service it was a chance to remember the man who Dr Davis says brought new members to their congregation ,

“He was just outgoing and so caring, and so concerned about the congregation, about the community, about his job — his family,” Davis said. “I mean it was just consuming.”

Dr. Davis now emphasizes that now is the time to lean on each other and on the word of God.

“We have to make sure that the bond is strong that controls us and supports us, and more importantly we want to support this family,” he said.

A family is suffering. A woman is without her husband and three young children are without their father.

Pastor Boy’s youngest daughter, who just turned one, was baptized last week. Dr. Davis said the whole church is praying.

“We want to put our arms of protection around her and let her know she’s not alone,” Davis said. That she is loved, that she is taken care of, and not just in the days to come, but beyond this time to know that this family is still her family.

The Shelby County Sheriff’s Office has not released the cause of the accident, but it is being investigated.

MSCS Superintendent Toni Williams released a statement in a tweet.

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