James W. Fondren, 87, born in Lombardi, Miss., on May 14, 1925, died Friday, Nov. 30, 2012, at his home in Houma, with his family around him.
Private graveside services will be in Biloxi National Cemetery.
He was a loving husband for 66 years to his surviving wife, Tobe; as well as a father to his son, James W. Jr.; and to his three daughters, Cindy, Sharon and Carol; his son-in-law Billy; six grandsons; one granddaughter; and one great-grandson.
He served in the elite 101st Airborne Division as a paratrooper during WWII
and fought in two major campaigns: the Battle of Bastogne and the Battle for Remagen Bridge. He attended Hinds Junior College after the war and retired after 28 years of service with Texaco, Inc.
He was an outstanding high school athlete in football, track, boxing and baseball. He held the Mississippi State Welterweight Golden Gloves boxing championship for five years as well as the Mid South Golden Gloves Champion in 1947. He won 33 boxing matches during that period, and 28 were by knockout.
He was an avid golfer at Ellendale Country Club for 38 years, where he was a founding member.
He was a guest lecturer on WWII in local Louisiana schools for many years.
Samart Funeral Home in Houma is in charge of arrangements.