James D. Shelton, of Palm Beach Gardens, FL, passed away on August 13, 2013 at the age of 73. Born on June 29, 1940 in High Point, NC, Mr. Shelton was the son of the late Annie Pearl Crutchfield Shelton and Carl Ramsey Shelton. Mr. Shelton grew up in High Point. He received a BA Degree from North Carolina State University in Raleigh, North Carolina and a Juris Doctorate Degree from the Law School of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, NC. Mr. Shelton practiced law in Columbus, OH, for eleven years before suffering a major heart attack, and moving to Florida to become a Trust Banker. While Mr. Shelton's law career was not a very lengthy one, it was a very successful one, and there was a lot of pride in the number of wins in the Court of Appeals, plus one in the Supreme Court of Ohio. One of Mr. Shelton's highlights was having one of his legal cases made into a movie, "Little Girl Lost", and being portrayed by actor Chris McDonald. Mr. Shelton was a very active and ardent Toastmaster for more than 30 years. He liked to say that he probably had given more competitive Toastmasters International Speeches than anyone else in the history of the organization. At one point or another, Mr. Shelton belonged to six different Toastmasters Clubs in three states, and never missed a chance to speak in every single contest event. Mr. Shelton loved speaking and roasts so much that two years ago he gave himself a eulogy roast so he could hear what his friends had to say about him and he could rebut them. Jim is survived by his devoted and loving wife, Sandra A. Shelton of Palm Beach Gardens; son, Bryan S. Shelton and wife, Jen, and grandchildren, Cassidy and Carter of Columbus, OH; daughter-in-law, Janna Shelton;, grandchildren, Anna Elizabeth Shelton, Wesley Robert Shelton and Luke Edward Shelton of Graham, NC, Crystol Erin Shelton of Copley, OH; stepdaughter, Jennifer Schwartz of Palm Beach Gardens, and stepson, Phillip Schwartz and wife, Chelsea of Fort Myers, FL. Mr. Shelton was preceded in death by sons, Robert Edward Shelton and Eric Douglas Shelton. Mr. Shelton is also survived by a sister, Harriett S. Walker and her husband, Mickey, and their children, Mary Anne Nester (Carl), Rachel Rogers (Patrick), Elizabeth Wentz (Jerry) and Virginia Tweed (Timothy). He is also survived by his very special and loving uncles, Tom and Alfred Crutchfield and an angel of an aunt, Peggy White, and many grand nieces and nephews and cousins. Jim was also blessed with the enjoyment of lifelong friendships with High Point natives and fellow Wolfpackers and special golfing buddies, Michael D. Tomlin, Gary F. Workman, and Peter Daniel Poteat. Jim also enjoyed a long term friendship with mentor, lawyer, and Toastmaster friend, Tom Avrutis of Sarasota. At various times in Palm Beach Gardens, Ft. Myers, Sarasota and Bradenton, Jim served on the Board of Directors for the American Heart, American Lung, Red Cross, and American Cancer Society. A special thank you to Jupiter Medical Center for their great nursing and technical personnel. Also thank you to Hospice of Sarasota. Memorial Mass will be held on Friday, August 16 at 10:00 AM, St. Patrick Catholic Church, 13591 Prosperity Farms Road, Palm Beach Gardens. Private burial will be held in North Carolina. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Mr. Shelton's memory to a Hospice of your choice.

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Published in The Palm Beach Post from Aug. 15 to Aug. 18, 2013