James W. Richardson Jr. PORTSMOUTH - James W. Richardson Jr., 47, of the 100 block of Gillis Road, departed this life to be with the Lord on Oct. 6, 2011. He was born in Portsmouth to the late Fannie Stephens Richardson and the late James Richardson Sr. He previously resided in Atlanta. He was a 1982 graduate of Woodrow Wilson High School and a 1986 graduate of Hampton University where he served as class president. James joined Hampton University's English department in September 2008 as an assistant professor. He completed his M.A. in English at Miami University (Oxford, Ohio) where he was awarded the Havighurst Award in poetry and Emory University where he was currently writing his doctoral thesis "Theorizing a Diasporic Aesthetic in Twentieth-Century Black and Jewish American Autobiography." James taught at Kennesaw State University, Morehouse College and Phillips Academy. An Academy of American Poets winner and winner of the 2004 Associated Writing Program's Writing Centers and Conferences Award (Poetry), James' poetry has appeared in Callaloo, Mothering Magazine, Indiana Review, and the anthology Rainbow Darkness: Poems and Essays from the Diversity in African American Poetry Conference. James taught composition and literacy form. His research interests included grammar analysis, rhetoric, philosophy and critical theories of race, class and gender identity. James played the violin in the T.A.M. Orchestra under the direction of the late Geraldine Harding, the Hampton University Orchestra, York River Symphony Orchestra and etc. James was preceded in death by his older brother, Christopher L. Richardson. Survivors include five sisters: Nellie Spence (George) of Portsmouth, Janet Banks (Mack) of Williamsburg, Kathryn Richardson of Dumfries, Va., Brenda Richardson Walston (Randy) of Norfolk and Katie Richardson Lovejoy (Shannon) of Chesapeake; one brother, Michael Stephens Richardson of Portsmouth; one aunt, Gladys Hayes of Chesapeake and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, friends and colleagues. A homegoing service will be held Thursday, Oct. 13, at 11 a.m. at BibleWorld Church, 600 Happy Acres Road, Chesapeake under the Leadership of Pastor Jack Cunningham. The family would like to extend special thanks to Dr. Keith Newby and staff of Sentara Norfolk Heart Hospital, Maryview Medical Center and Chesapeake Regional Medical Center. In lieu of flowers, please send cards, donations, etc., in c/o Brenda Walston, 6861 Orangewood Avenue, Norfolk, VA 23513. Corprew Funeral Home is in charge.
Published in The Virginian Pilot on October 12, 2011