Jim passed peacefully at his residence early the morning of Saturday, Aug. 18. Jim will be missed by all who knew, loved and respected him.
Born in Wilmington, N.C., on May 12, 1921, Jim was the forth of six children of his parents Leon Forest Andrews and Bessie Edens Andrews. Jim graduated from New Hanover High School in 1938 and earned his Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Nebraska after a career-long course of studies.
Jim joined the U.S. Army in 1940 as a private in the Coast Artillery and retired 30 years later as a full Colonel in the regular army, ending his career as a base commander in Viet Nam. Serving with the 6th Infantry Division in the Pacific during WWII, Jim fought engagements from New Guinea to the Philippines where he earned two Bronze Stars with oak leaf cluster for valor. He was also awarded the Purple Heart for wounds received as a rifle platoon leader during the battle for Luzon.
While recovering from his wounds in the military hospital at Ft. Carson, Colo., Jim was nursed by his future wife and life-long partner, Blanche Kathlyn (Kay) Magers of Augusta, who passed away in 2009 after 64 years together.
Highlights in Jim’s military career following WWII include service in Italy immediately after the war, a tour in Japan serving as commanding officer of Gen. Douglas MacArthur’s Honor Guard during the Korean War, Guide Officer for the State Funeral of John F. Kennedy where he escorted family members and dignitaries attending the funeral, and tours of duty in Germany.
Jim retired to Wilmington and Sloop Point, N.C., in 1969 where he enjoyed improving his homes, fishing, being Grampie, and finding new ways to cook shrimp. Jim was an avid golfer and especially loved the game and his many golfing buddies.
Jim is survived by his sister, Jeannine Andrews Smith of Wilmington, N.C., and his two sons, James L. Andrews, Jr. of Charlotte, N.C., and Michael K. Andrews of Huntingtown, Md. Jim has four grandchildren who loved him dearly: James M. Andrews of Atlanta, Amelia A. Abbott of Charlotte, and Emma K. Andrews and Holly C. Andrews of Huntingtown. In the weeks just before his passing, Jim was able to visit his beach home on Topsail Sound and enjoy the company of his family, including his sister, nieces and four great-grandchildren.
Jim, you will be in our hearts forever. God Bless.
The family will receive friends from 4 to 5:30 p.m. today at the Andrews Mortuary, Market Street Chapel. Jim will be buried with honors at the Arlington National Cemetery along side his wife Kay.
Page 2 of 2 - In lieu of flowers, the family would like donations sent to the Lower Cape Fear Hospice in Wilmington.
Condolences may be sent to the family at www.andrewsmortuary.com.
Andrews Mortuary, Wilmington, NC