Ivor businessman West dies at 84

Published 8:36 pm Monday, September 7, 2009

Ivor businessman and civic leader James Russell West died Saturday after his morning walk. He was 84.

Funeral services will be at 3 p.m. Tuesday at Ivor Baptist Church with the Rev. Chad McGinnis and the Rev. Lytle Buckingham officiating. Burial with military and Masonic rites will follow in Ivor Cemetery.

Mr. West was the owner and chairman of the board of Ivor Furniture Co., the business he started in 1949. Mr. West joined the Navy in 1943 at age 17 and served in the Philippines during World War II. He was a lifelong member of Ivor Baptist Church, where he served as chairman of the Board of Deacons, a Trustee, and in many other capacities. Mr. West was mayor of Ivor from 1960 to 1964 and a founder and past president of the Ivor Volunteer Fire Department and Ivor Volunteer Rescue Squad.

He was a 50-year member and twice past master of Ivor Masonic Lodge 291. He was a member of B&B Hunt Club and an avid hunter of turkey and deer. He was a 50-year member of the Ivor Ruritan Club. Mr. West was a past chairman and member of the Board of Directors of the Bank of Sussex and Surry, now BB&T. He was on the boards of Southampton Memorial Hospital, Southampton Academy, the Franklin-Southampton Area Chamber of Commerce, and the Virginia Baptist Home.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Charles Washington West and Vera Johnson West, and three brothers, Charles W. “Pete” West, Dr. Marvin F. West, and Walter T. “Dink” West. .

He is survived by his wife of 57 years, MaryAnn Carr West; two daughters, JoAnn W. Hall and husband Mark of Smithfield and Alice W. Scott and husband Dixie of Ivor; two sisters, Nancy W. Raiford and husband Elton of Ivor and Margaret W. Schutte and husband Harry of Richmond; three sisters-in-law, Alethia West of Portsmouth, Virginia Rowan of Marietta, Ga., and Mildred B. West of Williamsburg; five grandchildren, Russell W. Frohman, Ashlyn S. Scarborough and husband Robert, Dusty Scott, Savannah Hall and Hayley Hall; and numerous nieces and nephews.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Ivor Baptist Church, 8506 Bell Ave., Ivor, VA 23866; Ivor Volunteer Fire Department, P.O. Box 213, Ivor, VA 23866; or Ivor Volunteer Rescue Squad, P.O. Box 228, Ivor, VA 23866. Purviance Chapel, J.T. Morriss & Son Funeral Home, Wakefield, is handling arrangements.