Minister Willie Joe Hall was born on August 24,1938 in Miami, Fla., to Minister Joseph Seamon and Ola Mae Hall. He was called home to the Lord on Dec. 9, 2018. He was 80 years old.
He accepted Jesus Christ at an early age and joined the U.S. Army shortly after graduating from high school.
He married Addie D. Hall in Pontiac, Mich., and together raised three children.
Hall moved his family to Oakland in 1965 and joined Pleasant Grove Baptist Church in the early 1970s where he became the church organist. While there, he answered the call to the ministry and was ordained a gospel preacher by the late Pastor Arlee Hightower. Hall then attended Bay Cities Bible Institute (Standard Bible Courses), Simpson Bible College (Bachelor of Arts) and Slidell Baptist Seminary (Master of Theology and Doctor of Divinity).
In 1977, God gave Hall the vision to pastor a church. Started in his living room, Grace Baptist Church flourished and they soon purchased property at 705 98th Avenue in Oakland.
Spreading his ministry to others, Hall later served at North Oakland Missionary Baptist Church under Dr. Lloyd C. Blue, as interim pastor at Fellowship Baptist Church in Fresno, Ca., as well as several other churches throughout the Bay Area. Hall served at the Progressive Baptist Church under Dr. Earl C. Stuck¬ey until the Lord called him home.
Minister Hall was a well-known musician and his musical influence spanned over decades. He played the organ for Mingleton Temple COGIC and Pleasant Grove BC in the late 1960s to early 1970s and Allen Temple BC and Progressive BC in the 2000s. A talented songwriter, producer and arranger, he formed a singing group – “The Ambassadors for Christ” during the early 1970s. His musical influence has been passed on to his children as they each hold ministry roles in music at their various churches.
Hall was preceded in death by his wife of 41 years, Addie D. Hall in 2007. He remarried in 2009. Minister Hall leaves to cherish his memory his wife Jacqueline Clavo-Hall; daughter April Hall-Ellison Lampkin; sons Derrick (Andrea) and Vernon (Empress); nine grandchildren: Malyka, Mayori and Marjani Ellison, Aliya, Rhamia, Dominick, Emperor, Empire and Alexandrea Hall; one great-granddaughter: Jaydin Martin and a host of relatives, extended family, church family and close friends who will miss him dearly.