James Earl Barnes

Published 10:35 am Monday, January 31, 2011

Franklin – James Earl Barnes, ­­73, died on January 29, 2011 at VCU Medical Center in Richmond. A lifelong resident of the Franklin/Southampton County area, he was the son of the late Moody and Martha Drake Barnes of Newsoms. He was predeceased by a sister, Martha Clark, and four half siblings, Mae Drake, and Thomas, Samuel and Walter Barnes. He is survived by his wife of 49 years, Martha Vaughan Barnes; two daughters, Rebecca Theuer and husband Stephen of Richmond, and Anne Eason and husband Paul of Chesapeake; five grandchildren, Catherine, Emily and William Theuer, and Cole and Kayleigh Eason; a sister, Elsie Hilliard, a special nephew, Lynn Jenkins, and numerous other nieces and nephews.

Mr. Barnes was Salutatorian of the Newsoms High School Class of 1955. He was also a graduate of The Virginia-Maryland School of Bank Management, and Paul D. Camp Community College. He retired from Bank of America after 41 years of service. His life was devoted to the care of his family and to volunteer work in the community. He held numerous leadership positions with the Jaycees, Lions Club, Ruritan Club, and Friends of the Franklin Library. A member of Franklin Baptist Church, he taught Sunday School, and served as a deacon, Sunday School Director, youth leader, and member of countless committees. He had a keen interest in the history of his family, as well as that of Southampton County, and possessed a tremendous store of knowledge on these subjects. In his later years, his five grandchildren were his greatest joy, and he was immensely proud of each one.

A funeral service will be held on Thursday, February 3 at 11:00, at Franklin Baptist Church. Interment will follow in Poplar Spring Cemetery.

The family will receive visitors daily in the Barnes home, and at Wright Funeral Home on Wednesday, February 2, from 7 to 9 PM. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Franklin Baptist Church, 208 North High Street, Franklin, VA, 23851. www.wrightfuneralhome.org