James Harold Pugh

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James Harold Pugh, 87, a native and lifelong resident of Dawson County, passed away at his home on Friday, June 3, 2011, after an extended illness. Born Sept. 23, 1923, to the late Shelton and Minnie Townsend Pugh, he was the last surviving child of nine children. He was the oldest male member of Liberty Baptist Church where he was baptized in 1936 and served as a deacon from 1953 until his death.
Mr. Pugh was a World War II veteran having served in the U.S. Army 69th Infantry Division and received a Purple Heart after being wounded in Leipzig, Germany, on April 18, 1945. He served on the Dawson County Board of Education from 1958-1973. During his career on the school board, the system was faced with rebuilding after fires destroyed the only high school, and later another school building containing classrooms and the high school gymnasium. After 32 years of service he retired from the U.S. Postal Service.
James and Ethel were lifelong poultry growers who received numerous top awards for their achievements in their profession including being chosen as the Outstanding Conservation Farmer of Dawson County. On June 26, James would have been a 60-year member of the Chestatee Masonic Lodge #102 where in 1959 he served as Master of Lodge. His memory will remain for generations to come as a result of the many homes and structures he built in the northeast Georgia area including his beloved Liberty Baptist Church.
James was preceded in death by his loving wife of 62 years, Ethel Imogene Barker Pugh; sisters, Geraldine P. Martin, Mardell P. and Jack Townley, Evelyn P. and Clay Smith, Iris "Dinky" P. Stewart, Mazelle P. and Clayton Holbrook; brothers, Toy Dean Pugh, Charles T. Pugh, George and Opal B. Pugh.
Survivors include his children, Brenda P. and Bobby Thomas of Cumming, Dewane Pugh of Dawsonville, Martha P. and John Hembree of Gainesville, Ricky and Lynn Pugh of Gainesville; grandchildren, Melissa T. and Bert Durand, Seth and Resa Thomas, Heather P. and Patrick Lowery, Blake Hembree, Jameson Hembree, Matthew Pugh, Justin Pugh; great-grandchildren, Emily Durand, Thomas Durand, Adelyn Thomas, Elena Lowery, Kate Lowery; brothers-in-law, Darrell Stewart, John and Patty Barker; sisters-in-law, Inez Pugh, Lola Pugh, Maxine B. and Tommy Phillips, Carol B. Roper, Dorothy Nelle Barker; and a large number of other relatives.
Funeral services were held June 6, at Liberty Baptist Church with the Rev. Ruel Martin, the Rev. Mitchell Rickett, the Rev. Garry English, and the Rev. Stephen Davis officiating. Interment followed in the church cemetery with full military honors.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Liberty Baptist Church Building Fund, 66 Sundown Way, Dawsonville, GA 30534.
Those wishing to make online condolences may do so at www.littledavenport.com.
Little and Davenport Funeral Home of Gainesville is in charge of arrangements.
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Little-Davenport Funeral Home
355 Dawsonville Highway Southwest
Gainesville, GA 30501
(770) 534-5201
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Published in ForsythNews.com from June 8 to June 11, 2011
bullet Purple Heart bullet U.S. Army bullet Veterans bullet World War II