Mr. James died at 10:10 a.m., Friday, October 18, 2013, at his home.
He was born March 17, 1929, at Ravenden Springs, Arkansas, to Eual James Sr. and Cora Bell James.
On May 17, 1952, he was married to Martha Bryan Carter. He was married to Joyce Reid James on September 14, 1979. On February 27, 1995, he was married at Harrison, Arkansas, to Kay Polk Thompson.
He graduated from Couch High School with the Class of 1948 and attended college at Arkansas State University at Jonesboro, Arkansas, obtaining a teacher certificate. He taught at Lanton, Missouri from 1949 to 1950, until he was drafted. Mr. James served with the United States Army during the Korean Conflict for 14 months, as a medic in the battle zone from 1951 to 1952. He also served in Pusan Chu’chon, and up to the 38th Parallel and was honorably discharged with the rank of Sergeant. Bud then finished school with the G.I. bill and obtained a Bachelor of Science Degree from Arkansas State University and completed 160 hours of graduate work from Drury College in Springfield, Missouri and Central Missouri State University at Warrensburg, Missouri. Mr. James taught at the Irish Wilderness, Pierce City and in West Plains from 1955 to 1966.
Bud became a well-known businessman in the West Plains area and was a dedicated community leader. He volunteered a great deal of time and served on many local boards and organizations. He established James Motor Sales in 1964 and retired in 1993 after 29 years with many loyal customers and friends. He also served on committees and boards within the Industrial Development Commission, West Plains R-7 School Board, where he served as President of the Board for several years and was instrumental in bringing Southwest Missouri State University (now known as Missouri State University) to West Plains. He also served on the Howell County Tourism committee, University of Missouri Extension, Ozarks Medical Center Board of Directors and Howell County Industrial Development Board. During his retirement years, he spent many enjoyable hours with his friends on the West Plains Country Club golf course. He enjoyed playing the mandolin and guitar and spent many hours playing gospel, country and bluegrass music with his brother and sister-in-law, Eugene and Mary Lou James and their friends.
Mr. James was a Christian, having attended the First United Methodist Church in West Plains for ten years where he enjoyed being an active member of the Seekers Sunday School Class.
He is survived by his wife, Kay James, of the family home; three children, Sherry Cook, husband Dennis, Terri Johnson, husband Martin and Brock Eual James, wife, Bethany, all of Springfield, Missouri; one step-son, Dallas Thompson, wife, Denise, Nixa, Missouri; four grandchildren; Michael and Lauren Cook, Carrick James and Suzannah Thompson; one brother, Eugene James, wife, Mary Lou, West Plains, Missouri; one sister-in-law, Donna Depee, husband, Kent, Mountain View, Missouri; one niece, Alice Massey; and one nephew, Danny James, wife, Florence.
Bud is following closely behind his good friend, Leapy Rickard.
His parents and one sister-in-law, Ella James, precede him in death.
Visitation will be held from 9:30 until 10:00 a.m., Wednesday at Robertson-Drago Funeral Home. Burial will be in the Oak Lawn Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to Three Rivers Hospice or The Eual “Bud” James Scholarship Fund for Missouri State University, West Plains, and may be left at Robertson-Drago Funeral Home. Online condolences may be expressed at www.robertsondrago.com.