John Clifford Raborn

John Clifford Raborn, 86, of Bryan, Texas, passed away on Friday, January 28, 2011. Visitation will be Wednesday, February 2, from 5:00 to 7:00 pm, at Callaway-Jones Funeral Home in Bryan. Funeral Services are set for 2 pm on Thursday, February 3, at the First Baptist Church, Bryan. Interment will follow at Steep Hollow Cemetery.

John was born in Waco, Texas, on July 6, 1924, to Ed L. Raborn and his wife Willie Martha Emma M. Raborn. He graduated from Waco High School, Class of ’41 and went on to attend Baylor University before enlisting in the Army/Air Force. After the war, he returned to Baylor University where he graduated in 1948. Later he attended the Southwestern Theological Seminary earning a MRE and GSRE.
John met Nelwyn Martin while attending Baylor University and they were married on March 17, 1945, at the First Baptist Church of Bryan. John and Nelwyn spent 32 years in Hong Kong as missionaries with the International Mission Board, serving their Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. In Hong Kong, he served as the General Manager of the Baptist Press, the Chinese Baptist literature publishing house, and before retiring served as Area Coordinator of the MasterLife Discipleship Program.

He was preceded in death by his wife of 64 years, Nelwyn Martin Raborn.
Survivors include his daughters Becky Carlton, of Bryan, daughter, Peggy Morris and her husband, Lewie, of Fort Worth, daughter, Kay Jones and her husband, Ronny of Bryan, son John Clifford Raborn, Jr. and his wife, Melody, of Fort Worth, daughter, Ruth Ann Moller and her husband Scott, of Nursery, and daughter, Rachel Norris and her husband, Bob, of Bryan. He is also survived by his grandchildren, Christopher Carlton and Bradley Carlton, Jessica Morris and Joanna Morris, Jeffrey Jones and his wife, Sabrina, Gregory Jones and his wife, Dee, Scott Jones and his wife, Shannon, Karen Raborn and Laura Raborn, Harrison Moller and Emily Moller, and David Norris and Anna Norris; great-grandchildren, Gabriela Jones, Garrett Jones, Blaine Jones and Walter Jones; his brother, Ed Raborn and his wife, Juanita; his brother, Bob Raborn and his wife, Nancy, and numerous nieces and nephews.

Memorials may be made to the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering through the First Baptist Church of Bryan.


  1. I am so sorry for your loss. May knowing that Uncle John is in God’s presence bring you comfort & peace as you journey through this difficult season. What joy it is to know that we do not end here, but move on to the Hope that is everlasting in Christ Jesus, Our Lord. Uncle John knew that & is now experiencing this knowledge firsthand. May the celebration of Uncle John’s life be a blessing & bring glory to God,our Father.

  2. I am so sorry to hear of your dad’s passing. It was a pleasure getting to know him and to take care of him. I know he is in a better place and happy to be with your mom. God bless you all and be with you in this time of sorrow.

  3. Uncle John and Aunt Nelwyn were my true Uncle and Aunt in Hong Kong. They were always very dear to me. They watched over us at Hampshire Rd and led by their faith. My prayers and thoughts are with all of you as you grieve. May peace and comfort be very real to you, Carlton and Karen (Smith) Moore.

  4. Becky,

    My heart aches for you and your family. You and your sons and whole family are in my prayers.



  5. Dear Raborns,
    Your family have a special place in my heart, and it’s not just because you had your own cabin on Laan Tau! I am so glad I was able to grow up with all of you, and with Aunt Nelwyn and Uncle John. My heart is with you all.

    Deborah Smith

  6. My sincerest sympathy to all of you,family members and extended family. I have so many fond memories of John in Hong Kong and at our HK Reunions I will really miss him and I know that all of you will miss his presence with you but we can all rejoice in home-going to be with his Lord whom he served so faithfully. May God continue to comfort and support you during the coming. Donna

  7. Dear Raborn Family,
    We are in prayer for you during this time of loss.
    Uncle John was a precious treasure to all who knew him. His solid faith in the Word of God has been a personal model for me (and countless others)for which I will be eternally grateful.
    Grace and Peace,

  8. Dear Raborns:

    As we think back over our many years together in Hong Kong, so many memories come flooding back of such good times with John and all of you. There was that special time when Nelwyn showed us the secrets of making a “perfect” apple pie and John so perfectly showed us what to do with the finished product! There were the times of service together in church and in the mission. There were so many times of fun and fellowship. We loved watching all of you grow and blossom into adulthood.You are all so very special to us. May you know God’s wonderful comfort and grace as you go through these days. May His strong arms hold you close and give you peace.
    With love, LG and Flo McKinney

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