Dr. Jim Donnell
Dr. Jim Donnell, beloved husband and father, passed away peacefully from cancer on April 16, 2014 in Bells, TN at the age of 75, surrounded by his family and close friends.
James Harold Donnell was born to J.R. and Lee Ellen Wesson Donnell, August 15, 1938 in Union City, TN. After graduating from Trimble TN High School, Jim immediately married the love of his life, Joyce Ann Hall on June 14, 1957, with whom he shared the rest of his life. He enrolled at the University of Tennessee at Martin, later advancing to The University of Tennessee Medical School, where he earned his medical degree.
Doc, as he was known to so many of his friends, was promoted to Captain in the United States Air Force, proudly serving and completing his Family Practice Residency at Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, MS before returning to Tennessee, where he founded his own private practice at the Alamo Clinic. He served the Alamo and Crockett County area as a Family Practitioner for over 14 years. In 1980, he assumed the Directorship of the University of Tennessee School of Medicine's Family Practice Clinic In Jackson, TN. Noted for his expertise and dedication to practice of medicine, he was named President of the TN Academy of Family Practice in 1985 and was a long-time member of the Certification Test Committee of American Family Practice Association.
While at the UT Family Practice Clinic, he helped grow the program with a new clinic building and graduated 103 family medicine residents throughout his tenure. In 1995, he joined the Jackson Clinic in Jackson, TN where he practiced until his retirement in 2003.
Retirement from medicine only meant more time for he and Joyce to give back to the community they loved. Already known for service as a Scout Master and his dedication to the Exchange Club Carl Perkins Center for the Prevention of Child Abuse, he was also a loyal volunteer to Habitat for Humanity, The Gideon's, and enjoyed serving at Children's Bible Ministries/Camp Gilead in East TN, North Carolina and Florida. He and Joyce, and their beloved Cocker Spaniel, Ginger, would joyfully travel many miles in their motorhome to volunteer at projects around the southeast. He was also an avid University of Tennessee sports fan throughout his life.
He was a member of the First Baptist Church, Alamo TN for many years where he served as a deacon. He was later a member of Calvary Baptist Church in Jackson, TN where he also served as a deacon. In retirement, he was a member of Powell Baptist Church, Powell TN.
He was a strong Christian man who demonstrated his faith, not only through his words, but through action. He went on many mission trips over the years, taking him to Japan, Haiti, The Dominican Republic and Honduras, using his medical training to provide care to so many less fortunate than he.
Surviving Jim is his loving wife, Joyce; daughter, Elizabeth Ann Smith (Ronnie) of Jackson TN; and sons, Jim of Denver, CO, Richard (Sharon) of Knoxville, TN and Robert (Joy); 2 grandchildren, Chase and Cole Donnell of Cave Creek, AZ; his sister, Nancy Donnell Nale of Dyersburg, TN; and an extended community better for having James these last 75 years.
Visitation will be Friday, April 18th from 5-8 p.m., at Ronk Funeral Home, 145 S. Bells Street, Alamo, TN. Funeral service will be held at First Baptist Church in Alamo, TN on Saturday, April 19th at 10 a.m., with burial to follow in the Alamo Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Doc's name to any of these organizations: The Calvary Baptist Church Building Fund of Jackson, TN, The Gideon's, or Children's' Bible Ministries, P.O. Box 278, Townsend, TN 37882.
Ronk Funeral Home, (731) 696-5555.
Ronk Funeral Home - Alamo
145 S. Bells St. P.O. Box 326 Alamo, TN 38001
Published in The Jackson Sun on Apr. 18, 2014