James Shelby Sessums, Jr.
James Shelby Sessums Jr. died September 16, 2013, at his home in Natchez, Mississippi. Mr. Sessums was born January 20, 1939 in Drew, Mississippi to James Shelby Sessums and Frances Stokely Sessums.
Mr. Sessums was a graduate of Delta State University and was a veteran of the United States Navy, serving on the USS Independence. While living in Drew, he ran the family owned and operated Sessums Lumber Company, before moving to New Orleans.
Mr. Sessums was a resident of New Orleans, Louisiana for over 30 years where he was a real estate agent for Latter & Blum Inc., and was a member of the Chairman's Club. While living in New Orleans, he purchased and renovated The Blanqu-Paturzo-Sessums House, initiating the rebirth of the historic Bywater community.
For over 50 years Mr. Sessums traveled, frequently visiting the Natchez area, where he would finally settle. He was an avid lover of history, especially Mississippi history and in particular, Natchez history. Following Hurricane Katrina, Mr. Sessums retired to Natchez giving him the opportunity to indulge in his passion for the outdoors, gardening and historical architecture. Aside from his love of history, he enjoyed renovating homes and often served as a tour guide to visiting friends and family. Mr. Sessums could often be found on his front porch, listening to classical music with good friends and his boxer, Duke.
Mr. Sessums is survived by his daughter and son-in-law, Secily S. and Phil Friend; son, Clifton S. Sessums; three grandchildren, Mallory, Haley, and Keaton Friend, all of Hattiesburg; his siblings, Brad Sessums (Robin) of Jackson and Sandra Crosthwait of Jackson; and his partner, Stan McCearley.
In addition, he leaves behind many other friends and family members. He will be greatly missed by all.
Mr. Sessums was preceded in death by his father, James Shelby Sessums and his mother, Frances Stokely Sessums, of Drew, Mississippi.
A celebration of life for Mr. Sessums will be held Thursday, September 19, at 4:30 in the evening at Travelers Rest Plantation located at 417 Dunbarton Road in Natchez.
Memorial contributions can be made to the Drew United Methodist Church, 105 West Shaw Avenue Drew, Mississippi 38737.
Online condolences may be sent to the family at www.lairdfh.com
Laird Funeral Home Chapel - Natchez
408 North Union Street Natchez , MS 39120
Published in Clarion Ledger on Sept. 18, 2013