Michael David Merritt was welcomed home by Jesus on Monday morning, January 16, 2023. Visitation will be held at Fry Gibbs on Thursday, January 19, 2023, from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm. A celebration of life will be held on Friday, January 20, 2023, at 10:00 am at The Church of God on Bonham Street under the direction of Fry-Gibbs Funeral Home. Michael’s Pastors, Doug Holt and Mike Fortenberry, will eulogize him.
Michael was born in Paris, Texas, on August 13, 1986, to Kim and Jeff Merritt. He was greeted at home by his older brother Jason. Michael graduated from North Lamar in 2004 and was currently employed at GoodGuys Trailers. His early years were spent fishing with his Nana (Marion Parker) whom he loved dearly, looked up to, modeled his life after, and with whom he shared a strong and tight bond. He enjoyed going on fun excursions and vacations with his parents, his brothers, his Aunt Cindy who was like a Second Mother and her kids, his beloved cousins. As a young teenager, he spent time going to church and on yearly church trips with his friends that he loved and remained friends with his entire life.
At nineteen years of age, he fell in love with Taren Taylor, whom he met through his cousin Hillary. They married in a beautiful outdoor wedding on September 23, 2017. His love was intense and their bond could never be broken. He loved coming home to her every day, and greeted her as “My Love.” Michael and Taren completed each other, being one and establishing the truest form of early love.
Michael’s smile was big and bright, his heart was warm and his laugh was contagious and he had the most loving touch. Michael cared for others as his heart was open as he gave his full attention to them. He made room in his life for family and was loyal to them all. He was an encourager and would send daily scriptures or songs to his family members. Michael enjoyed hunting and fishing. He looked forward to and loved going on the annual BackPack Trip to Colorado with his brothers. His favorite way to spend his time was by being with Taren and his family. Michael valued each moment he spent with his brother Jonny at their special spot in Powderly. They shared their thoughts, their hearts, the music they loved, and much more. Together they found peace of mind underneath those Powderly Pines, with their beloved dogs Dook and Tuck. He was a beautiful and open person with a sweet soul. Those who loved him will cherish the many memories they have of him. One of his cousins said, “We will all carry a piece of Michael in our hearts forever.”
Michael was loved by and is survived by his beautiful wife, Taren Taylor Merritt; his parents Kim Parker Stevens and Jeff Merritt; his brother Jason and his wife, Randi Lou Merritt of Colorado; his brother Jonathan Merritt; his beloved and devoted grandparents Marion (Nana) and Patsy (Grandmama) Parker; his Aunt Cindy Parker Edmundson and husband Randy; and his cousin crew who were more like his brothers and sisters than just plain ole cousins: Heather Cope Altoe, Hillary Cope Millsap, Derek Cope, and Addison Cope; his Uncle Randall Merritt, Aunt Gwen Ballard and husband Gary and a multitude of cousins. Michael is also survived by Taren’s parents Mark and Priscilla Taylor; Taren’s sister and brother-in-law Brooke and Courtney Hill, special nephews Kasen, Kance, and Kallen Hill and soon to be niece; Taren’s sister Meagan Taylor; Taren’s brother Corban Taylor and wife Megan and their son Trenton. He was preceded in death by his paternal grandparents Cleo and Ruth Merritt and his aunt Charlotte Pilkington.
If you would like to make a memorial gift in Michael’s honor, please do so by gifting to Young Life Ministries.
Online condolences may be sent to the Merritt family by visiting www.frygibbs.com