In memoriam: Missionary emeritus William Lyle Sergeant, 1938-2023

William Lyle Sergeant, 1938-2023
IMB Photo

William Lyle Sergeant, an International Mission Board missionary emeritus who shared the gospel in Taiwan, died August 11, 2023, in Springdale, Arkansas. He was 84.

William was born November 27, 1938, in Marshalltown, Iowa, to the late Lyle Allen Sergeant and Grace Lang Sergeant. He graduated from Southwest City High School in Southwest City, Missouri, and received the Associate of Arts degree from Southwest Baptist College in Bolivar, Missouri, the Bachelor of Science degree from Oklahoma Baptist University in Shawnee, Oklahoma, the Master of Science degree from Wichita State University in Wichita, Kansas, and studied at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas.

He and LaVeta Pierce met in college. They were married in Belle Plaine, Kansas, in 1960. The couple was married for 63 years. Before seeking appointment as a missionary for the Foreign Mission Board (now International Mission Board), William worked as a teacher and coach in schools throughout Kansas.

In 1970, the Foreign Mission Board appointed William and LaVeta missionaries to Korea. They would later serve in Taiwan.

They served in Taejon, South Korea, where he was athletic director, coach and teacher at Korea Christian Academy, a school for missionary children, and served Korean churches. They also served in Taichung, Taiwan, at Morrison Academy where he was the athletic director, coach and teacher. He managed their swimming pool and was an instructor trainer of the American Red Cross, Far East Region.

The couple were founding members of Yoido International Church in Seoul, where he served as a Sunday School teacher, deacon and bus driver. He later helped plant Li Syang Gwo Baptist Church in Taichung, Taiwan, and taught English Bible study in a Taiwanese Baptist church.

The Sergeants retired from the IMB after 30 years in Asia.

He is survived by his wife, LaVeta; two sons, Curtis (Debra) Sergeant of Dadeville, Alabama, and Terry (Becky) Sergeant of Abilene, Texas; four grandchildren; and three great grandchildren.

A funeral service was held Aug. 19, at First Baptist Church in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

Read an obituary here.