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James Atkins

1931 - 2019
James Atkins Obituary
GASTONIA - James Harrison "Jim" Atkins, 87, former Publisher of The Gastonia Gazette, died peacefully early Sunday morning, May 26, 2019.

He was a resident of Carolina Care Health and Rehabilitation, Cherryville, N.C.

Jim was born September 16, 1931 in Gastonia, to the late Clara Pugh Atkins and William Stewart Atkins.

Jim graduated from Gastonia High School, class of 1949 (His class ironically held its 70th class reunion the weekend of his death). Following graduation from Duke University Undergraduate School and Duke Law School, Jim served for two years in the office of State Judge Advocate, U.S. Air Force. He then briefly entered law practice in Charlotte, N.C.

Upon the untimely deaths of his Uncle, Ben E, Atkins, his Father, Stewart Atkins and the illness of his Grandfather, James W. Atkins,

Jim returned to Gastonia, where he worked in the family business- The Gastonia Gazette. He served as President and Publisher.

Jim was a member of numerous civic and professional organizations, including the Gastonia Jaycees, North Carolina Press Association,

and The Gaston Country Club. He was one of the organizers of Gaston Tech (later Gaston College) and the Gaston County Republican Party.

Jim was named Gastonia's Young Man of the Year in 1963, and in 1964 was honored as one of the Outstanding Young Men of America.

In 2006 he was awarded the Martin Luther King Unity Award for his work on the Human Relations Commission.

He was a member of Resurrection Church in Charlotte, where he served as an Elder for 39 years. He actively ministered with his wife

in the church and community. His commitment and devotion were to his Lord, Jesus Christ, and to those whom God brought into his life. He will be especially remembered for his love and concern for others.

Jim was married to the former Carol Smedley of Shaker Heights, Ohio. During their 65 years of marriage, they had two children, and five Grandchildren. Jim is survived by his wife, Carol, a Son, James H. Atkins, Jr. of Gastonia; a Daughter, Laura A. Reinemann (Dave), of Kennewick, Washington; five grandchildren; two Sisters, Claire Stewart Atkins Pittman and Gay Rousseau Atkins, both of Oriental, N.C.; four nephews, one niece, and one First Cousin, Garland Atkins and Wife, Donna.

In addition to his parents, Jim was preceded in death by his Brother-in Laws, Robert Pittman and Paul Davis and his First Cousin, Ben E. Atkins, Jr.,

His Family wishes to thank the staff at Carolina Care Health and Rehabilitation for their compassion and excellent care.

A private service will be held on Monday June 3. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to Resurrection Church: 2940 Commonwealth Ave. Charlotte, NC 28205 or Carolina Care Health and Rehabilitation, Cherryville: 111 Harrelson Rd. Cherryville, NC 28021.

Woodlawn Funeral Home of Mount Holly, is serving the Atkins Family.
Published in Gaston Gazette on May 31, 2019
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