James passed away peacefully at home in Galveston, TX, May 15, 2019, at the age of 76. He leaves his family an endearing legacy of kindness and compassion. James was an avid fly fisherman. Casting his line from the high mountain streams of the Rockies to the saltwater flats of Belize. He was a master of dry humor. He loved coming up with jokes so subtle that they were undetectable by his friends and family.
James was born in Bonham, TX and lovingly raised by his mother, Pearl Atkins. He married Carole Gene Thompson in 1965. In the 1970s, Carole and James moved their growing family to Bremond, TX. James taught English literature and coached the football team at Bremond High School. In the 1980s he became a home builder and moved his family to College Station. There, riding horses, windsurfing, and fishing became a way of life for their three children. In the 1990s James enrolled at Texas A&M University where, at the age of 53, he received his Ph.D. in Urban Planning. He and Carole then moved to Galveston. James became the Assistant Vice President of Technology Development at UTMB. He also served on the advisory board for the Texas Coalition for Capital.
In Galveston, James turned his love of saltwater fly fishing into a daily ritual. He would head out to the bay most mornings before sunrise to kayak the marshes in search of redfish.
He is survived by his wife, Carole; three children, Jane and her husband Jimmy Baldwin, Jess and his wife Lisa, and Luke and his wife Jennifer; and three grandchildren, Max Baldwin, and Dylan and Paige Arie.
James’ family will receive visitors beginning at 3:00 pm, Saturday, June 15, at Malloy & Son Funeral Home. A service celebrating his life will begin at 4:00 pm.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation, Coastal Conservation Association, and Rosenberg Library of Galveston.