James Curtis Southern, 90, of Mineral Wells, went to be with the Lord Sunday morning, Jan. 20, after a brief illness.
Visitation was Monday evening from 6-8 p.m. at Baum Carlock Bumgardner Funeral Home. Service is set for Tuesday, Jan. 22, at 2 p.m. at Southside Church of Christ, 1401 Southeast 25th Ave., Mineral Wells.
He is survived by his wife of 66 years, Esta Mae Southern, two sons: Michael Southern and wife Janice of Ft. Worth, Gary Southern and wife Sharon of Mineral Wells, two daughters: Debbie Webb of Mineral Wells, and Karen Graham and husband Bill of Leander. He is also survived by 10 grandchildren: Deana Parkhill and husband C.D., Shane Webb and wife Brenda, Eilene Franks and husband Jason, Curtis Graham and wife Lauren, Elizabeth Graham, Kylie Brock and husband Marc, Jamie Southern and wife Megan, Lori Pena and husband Carlos, Amy O’Bannon and husband Damon, and Chase Southern. Great grandchildren are Baillie, Chloe, Grayson, Jonah, Courtney, Pamela, Jessie, Colby, Gary, William, Hudson, Tanner, Clint, Taylor, Allysa, Chelsea, and Brenden. He is also survived by a sister, Chloe Culp, and sister-in-law Margarita Southern, and numerous nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his father and mother: Claude and Myrtle Southern, sisters: Mattie Southern and Mary Turk, brothers: Richard, J.C., Ted, and Brownie Southern, and step-grandson: Cody Green.
Curtis was born on Feb. 19, 1922, in the Sturdivant Community. He was a staff sergeant in the U.S. Army during World War II serving in the Pacific Theater. He married Esta Mae Hearne on Dec. 26, 1946. He worked for many years as a flight chief at Southern Airways while also working tirelessly on his farm north of Mineral Wells. He enjoyed raising cattle and working in his orchard. He planted and cared for nearly 3,000 peach trees, selling the produce at Dallas and Ft. Worth Farmers’ Markets.
After “retirement,” he continued to work making his famous jams, jellies, and relishes.
His face lit up with pride when reading numerous letters he received from people all across the United States and as far away as Scotland, wanting to order more.
As much as he was proud of serving his country, raising cattle, and working on the farm, the thing that brought him the most joy was serving his Lord and spending time with his family. He was a faithful member of Eastside Church of Christ, where he enjoyed studying the Word and presenting the Gospel. He loved being surrounded by his children and grandchildren and enjoyed teaching them to hunt and fish. He left behind a rich legacy. He was a man of integrity, loved and respected by all, and will be greatly missed. Condolences may be left at
Baum-Carlock-Bumgardner Funeral Home