James Donald Whitfield Sr. was born on December 15, 1949, in Boligee, AL to the late Leasie Mae Whitfield and Richard Cook. After the death of his father, his mother moved the family to Mobile, AL where James graduated from Central High School. He continued and completed his education at Carper State where he studied Electronics. In 1970, James married Linda Hardy, and from this union they had eight children (four boys and four girls). James later married Loretta Miller, whom he affectionately called “Retta,” (no children to this union).
James was a very hard worker and he started working outside of the home at the age of fourteen, cutting grass and cleaning houses for the neighbors to earn money. In 1972, James moved the family to Columbus, OH, where he worked at Battelle and the Old Caskets company for many years. James always enjoyed working and he worked until the age of seventy renovating houses until his health prevented him from working.
James was a former member of Mt. Zion Baptist church in Mobile, AL. He served in the Junior Layman. James later became a member of Mt. Period Baptist church in Columbus, OH where he served in the choir. In 2017, James joined Unity Baptist Church. James loved God and he would always say, “I know God, and God knows me.” He would preach to everybody. He also loved that his sisters Shirley and Minnie are both Evangelizers.
James was incredibly supportive of the sick and he would walk miles to take care of his friends or family if you called him. If you were outdoors and needed a place to stay, he would always let you come in and share his place.
James was affectionately called “Slim” or “Preacher” by close family and friends. James was a very classy dresser and when he was not working, he wore a suit and a fedora everywhere for most of his adult life. James was a die-hard Dallas Cowboys fan (Yep, he was one of “dem” boys too) and he shared this sports bond with his son Bryan Whitfield, who preceded him in death in 2017.
James was preceded in death by his parents, Richard Cook and Leasie Whitfield, sister Bertha Whitfield, son Bryan Whitfield, grandson Devanique Whitfield, niece Shenavia Whitfield, and nephews Monroe J. Whitfield Jr, Mark Hardy, and Treyvon Hardy.
James leaves to celebrate his life and cherish his memory, wife Loretta Whitfield, sons James D. Whitfield Jr., and Baron Whitfield of Columbus, OH, Joshah (Morgan) Whitfield of Zanesville, OH, daughters Chanel (Warner) Miller of Atlanta, GA, Larissa Whitfield, Omalique Whitfield and Khalyssah Whitfield of Columbus, OH, step-daughter Latasha Piles and step-son Tony Edwards of Columbus, OH, 33 grandchildren, 21 great grandchildren, sisters, Lela M. Leland of Mobile, AL, Minnie (Ivan) Jackson of Seven, MD, Shirley Sherman of Grove City, OH, Daisy Watts of Columbus, OH, and Linda Richardson of Montgomery AL, brother Monroe J. Whitfield Sr. of Mobile, AL, special nieces Leasie Westerfield and Silena Hardy of Columbus, OH, special nephew Lodisee Hardy of Columbus, OH, longtime friend Robert “Alabama” Williams of Columbus, OH, and a host of other nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends.
Celebration of Life 11AM Monday, November 15, 2021 at Unity Baptist Church, 1358 Mt Vernon Ave., Columbus, Ohio, 43203. Family will receive Friends 10AM until time of service. Interment, Evergreen Cemetery.
Meeting ID: 425 917 6040
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