James Byron Freeman
- September 25, 1927 - January 12, 2013
- Williamsburg, Virginia
of James' Passing
Williamsburg Baptist Church
227 Richmond Rd
Williamsburg, VA 23185
William and Mary Athletic Educational Foundation
751 Ukrop Way
Williamsburg, VA 23185
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Arrangements made by
Nelsen Funeral Home
James Byron "Jim" Freeman of Williamsburg, 85, passed away on January 12, 2013. A native of Petersburg, he was the son of the late John H. and Etta Laurens King Freeman. Graduating Petersburg High School in 1944, he entered the College of William and Mary at 16, which began a lifelong passion for the school and for Tribe athletics. He was a proud member of the Olde Guarde and was an enthusiastic supporter of the Society of the Alumni and the William and Mary Athletic Educational Foundation. He later served in the United States Army and was honorably discharged in April 1947.
He was pleased to get an opportunity to return to Williamsburg in 1956 as a partner in a building supply business. He later owned a concrete, sand and gravel company and a commercial construction firm, ending his career as a construction executive of Fairfield Communities. He was a respected voice for his industry as a leader in the Associated General Contractors of Virginia. He was also a dedicated civic leader, serving as President of the Williamsburg Jaycees and as a leader in the Boy Scouts, receiving the Distinguished Service Award for 1958. He also served on the Board of Directors of the Williamsburg Regional Library, as a commissioner of the Williamsburg Redevelopment Housing Authority and two terms as a member of the Board of Directors of the Children's Home Society of Virginia.
He had a broad and deep sense of humor, making him a gifted storyteller and entertainer. He was passionate about traditional jazz and singing, which he did semi-professionally. He also enjoyed dancing, especially at Cotillion and Williamsburg German Club functions. In retirement, he enjoyed traveling, reading, history, genealogy and spending time with family and friends. He was a dedicated member of POGO, the Petersburg Old Geezers Organization, a group of 300+ men who had attended Petersburg High School in the 1930s-1950s.
He was a 55-year member and leader of Williamsburg Baptist Church, serving as deacon, teacher, and church treasurer.
He is survived by his loving wife of 59 years, Theresa Nester Freeman; a son, James Scott Freeman; a daughter, Teresa Freeman Parker, and her husband, Jim, and four grandchildren, Christopher Franklin, Joshua Franklin, Jordan Parker and Kelly Parker Kuklis (Tony). He is also survived by a nephew, two nieces, and a number of great nephews and great-nieces and more than a dozen cousins.
A Celebration of Life will be held at Williamsburg Baptist Church, 227 Richmond Road, on Thursday, January 17 at 2 PM with reception to follow. Interment will be at Cedar Grove Cemetery in a private family ceremony.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Williamsburg Baptist Church or the William and Mary Athletic Educational Foundation, 751 Ukrop Way, Williamsburg, VA 23185. Online condolences may be expressed at www.nelsencares.com.