James's Story

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James Elliott Day, devoted husband, family patriarch, pastor, and Bible teacher, went to be in the presence of our Lord on Thursday, October 27, 2016, in Jacksonville, Texas, after succumbing to a long illness. He was 84. Prior to his passing, James and Margaret, his wife of 64 years, were retired in Van, Texas, and attended First Baptist Church, where James was a pastor from 19681981.
James Day was born on March 11, 1932, in Marietta, Texas, to Noble Preston and Pearl (Elliott) Day, who owned the only general store in town and managed the cucumber processing facility. James never owned a bicycle, but he did own a horse. He attended the Marietta and Naples schools and was actively involved at Oakridge Baptist Church (Marietta), where he grew up with his childhood sweetheart and wife, Margaret Ann Hanes.
James graduated from Naples High School in 1950, attended Tyler Junior College, and received his bachelor's degree in history from East Texas Baptist College in Marshall (1955). He also attended California Baptist College and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Ft. Worth.
At 15 years old, James lost his mother—who was the most important person in his life—to cancer, and it had a profound impact on his life. In his grief, his father became detached, so James allowed some wonderful, godly men to come into his life and mentor him. While in high school, he dedicated his life to full-time Christian ministry. He preached his first sermon at his childhood church—Oakridge Baptist Church—while he was in college. James and Margaret were married and moved to California 3 days after Margaret's graduation from Paul H. Pewitt High School in Naples. This began a journey of raising 5 kids and pastoring 11 Baptist churches in 3 different states.
Reverend James Day had full-time pastorates at the following churches: Piney Grove Baptist (Pittsburg, TX); East New Hope Baptist (Mt. Pleasant, TX); Cason Baptist (Daingerfield, TX); Tempe Bible (Phoenix, AZ); Boulevard Baptist (Coolidge, AZ); First Baptist (Van, TX); First Baptist (San Augustine, TX); New River Baptist (St. Amant, LA); Oakridge Baptist (Marietta); First Baptist (Avinger, TX); and Silver Lake Baptist (Grand Saline, TX).
James Day was preceded in death by his parents, Preston and Pearl Day of Marietta, and his sister, Elizabeth McCoy, of Marietta. His surviving family members include:
Wife of 64 Years: Margaret Ann (Hanes) Day; 5 Children (+ Spouses): Alan & Lisa Day (San Antonio), Sheryl & Tim McFarlin (Dallas), Tim & Shirley Day (Plano), Chris & Cindy Day (Jacksonville), and Ben & Lee Ann Day (Dallas)
22 Grandchildren (+ Spouses) & 15 Great-Grandchildren: Joshua & Katie Day with Taylor, Aubrey, Campbell (Springfield, MO); Nathan & Allison Day with Nate, Luke, Drew, Will, Kate, Joy, Joel, Faith (North Richland Hills); Jeremy & Ladonna Day with Haley, Sam (San Antonio); Hannah & Chad Copeland with Paisley (Austin); Jesse Day (San Antonio); Levi Day (San Antonio); Leah Day (New Braunfels); Gracie Day (Auburn, AL); Ryan McFarlin (Dallas); Joseph & Beth Day with Jael (Houston); Oliver Day (Dallas); Maggie & Andrew Roehrig (McKinney); Annie Day (Denton); Lily & Austin Farley (Frisco); Patrick Day (Plano); Addison & Anna Day (Dallas); Robby Day (Nashville, TN); Katy Day (Dallas); Mercer Day (Houston); Ellie Day (Jacksonville); Preston Day (Dallas); and Lilah Day (Dallas)
Visitation at Hilliard Funeral Home in Van, Texas, on Sunday, October 30, 4:00-6:00 p.m. Public funeral service at First Baptist Church in Van, Texas, on Monday, October 31, 10:00 a.m., with burial service at Oakridge Cemetery in Marietta, Texas, at 2:30 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the Christian organization of your choice.
Published on October 28, 2016
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