Jimmy Hershall Alexander , of La Porte, TX, passed away on March 23, 2013 and is now in God's care. Born on February 16, 1933 in Merkel, TX, he was preceded in death by his wife of almost 60 years, Dorothy; and his parents Gordon and Lela Elizabeth Alexander and three sisters Ora Lee Tomes, Elsie Talley and Donnie Crafton.
He is survived by son Sterling Alexander and daughter-in-law Doris of Pasadena, Texas, and daughter Jan Lawler and son-in-law Hal of La Porte, Texas. Surviving grandchildren include Chris Alexander and wife Misty, Matt Alexander and wife Lindsay, Charlotte Alexander, Kathryn Lawler and fiancé Danny, John Alexander Lawler, Andrew Alexander and two great granddaughters Abby and Elizabeth, along with his beloved nieces and nephews and their children.
Growing up in West Texas, Jim attended and played football for Hardin Simmons University in Abilene, Texas where he met and married the love of his life Dorothy Petty on August 14, 1953. Soon thereafter, he was deployed for U.S. military service during the Korean conflict
. After serving abroad for two years, he returned to Texas to start his civilian life with Dorothy. In 1956 the couple relocated to El Paso, Texas where Jim worked for Universal C.I.T. Credit Corporation; and in 1958, Jim launched his life-long work as a peace officer with the Abilene Police Department. He moved to the Department of Public Safety of Texas in 1967, working in the Houston/Pasadena area. He received recognitions, promotions and citizen appreciation letters throughout his career until his retirement in 1992 after 26 years of service with the DPS.
From his early years on a farm, to working beside his carpenter father, Jim never backed away from a challenge. He was tough, his height and tremendous athletic strength earned him the nickname "Jumbo" that remained a term of endearment for the rest of his life. A 1983 Houston Chronicle article highlighted Jim, describing him as a "hulking 6-foot-4, with a handshake that could straighten a bumper. But he is a gentle, soft-spoken man whose eyes brighten when he tells a story."
Those who knew Jim would say he worked diligently with Dorothy to raise their two children, and by example, teaching God's love, patience, hard work, ethics and joy of life. He demonstrated community involvement, especially during his years in Pasadena, Texas serving on the Pension Board of the Pasadena Volunteer Fire Department, Kiwanis Club and as a Master Mason in Pasadena Lodge No. 1155. Never one to complain, Jim shared his infectious smile, hearty laugh, and sincere human kindness until the end.
The family wishes to thank Dr. Chris Hays and Jim's home health-care "angels" for their dedication to his well-being and comfort. Visitation will be held Tuesday, March 26 2013, at Rosewood Funeral Home, 3939 Pasadena Blvd. in Pasadena, Texas from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM; with funeral services slated for Wednesday, March 27, at 11:00 AM at the First Baptist Church of La Porte, 310 S. Broadway, La Porte, Texas. Donations in his honor may be mailed to First Baptist Church of La Porte at P.O. Box 2075, La Porte, Texas 77572. Words of comfort may be shared at www.rosewood.cc under Current Services.