Dennis (Dan) L. Ireland went home to be with his Heavenly Father on December 24, 2019. Visitation will be held on December 30, 2019 from 11:30 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. A service will be held at 1:00 p.m. with a graveside service immediately thereafter at Currie Jefferson Funeral Home at 2701 John Hawkins Parkway in Hoover, AL. Dr. Ireland is preceded in death by his parents, James Floyd and Willie Lee Ashworth Ireland; brothers, Ralph Larry and Jerry Ray Ireland and sister, Gloria June Ireland Storey. Dr. Ireland is survived by his wife of 68 years, Pauline Elizabeth Tucker Ireland; sister, Myra Gail Ireland O’Quinn; daughter, Denise Ireland Cypress and husband Fred; son, Jeffrey Ireland and Wife Barbara; grandchildren, Daniel Ireland, Michael Ireland, Kathryn Ireland and David Cypress; five great-grandchildren, Sarah Ireland, Amelie Ireland, Mattias Ireland, Iris Ireland and Aurelia Ireland; a special group of nieces and nephews; and friends too numerous to count.
He was born the third of five children to James Floyd and Willie Lee Ashworth Ireland on March 17, 1930, in Birmingham, Alabama. He was a graduate of Ensley High School. Dr. Ireland was a graduate of Howard College (Samford University) and the New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, he also received an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree from Samford University.
While serving as student pastor of Jackson Memorial Baptist Church in Chambers County, Alabama, he had the good fortune of meeting, dating and falling in love with Pauline Elizabeth Tucker, who on January 20, 1952, became Mrs. D. L. Ireland. To this God-ordained union were born Denise Lynn and Jeffrey Ray. No family ever enjoyed fellowship and love any more than this Ireland clan. Added to this family are Barbara Rydberg Ireland, Jeffrey's wife, and Fred Karlton Cypress, Denise's husband. And, of course, the delight of the entire family has been the birth of four precious grandchildren children and five precious great grandchildren.
Having grown up in a Christian home and in faithful church attendance, Dan accepted Christ as his personal Savior in July, 1939, at Pratt City Baptist Church where he was baptized at the hands of Dr. J. L. Aders. Dan was ordained to the Gospel Ministry in August, 1949 by his home church in Birmingham, Pike Avenue Baptist Church, at the hands of Rev. Theo Harris, Dan's Pastor.
During his many years of ministry, Dr. Ireland served as pastor of the following churches: Jackson Memorial Baptist (his first pastorate and their first pastor); Dolomite Baptist (Bessemer); Eastside Baptist (Birmingham); First Baptist Church (Fort Payne); Jackson Way Baptist (Huntsville) and interim pastor of Westmont Baptist Church (Birmingham). He also served as Executive Director of The Alabama Citizens Action Program (ALCAP). Among the many places of leadership in Alabama, he served as Chairman of the Board of Missions and President of the Alabama Baptist State Convention. He led in the establishment of an "AA" group in Fort Payne and also helped to establish a Gideon Camp in that area. He was one of the founding members of the CEO Fellowship House in Gadsden for alcohol rehabilitation.
He served on the national level through the Southern Baptist Convention and the American Council on Alcohol Problems (ACAP), serving as President of ACAP'S Board of Directors. As a part of this role, he had the privilege of meeting with the President of the Unites States in the White House to help influence decisions affecting people. He served on the Governor's Task Force to study the drinking and driving problem in Alabama. He was a spiritual leader in the Alabama Legislature through the ministry of ALCAP. Dan Ireland was a diligent servant for the cause of righteousness and the good for all people of Alabama.
In lieu of flowers, please consider making donations to the following:
Alabama Baptist Children’s Homes
P.O. Box 361767
Birmingham, AL 35236