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James William Beasley

James William Beasley, 72, of Brandon, left this earth and stepped through the door of eternity just before the sun rose on Sunday, Sept. 12, 2021. A memorial service was held Sept. 15 at Brandon Baptist Church. Interment took place at Crestview Memorial Gardens in Brandon. Stringer Family Funeral Services in Crystal Springs handled the arrangements.
James was born in Hinds County to the late L.W. Beasley and Juanita Pace Beasley on Oct. 13, 1948. He was a graduate of Forest Hill High School and earned his bachelor’s degree from Mississippi College and master’s from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary.
James began his career in music ministry at the age of 17 and served briefly at Park Hill and Star Baptist Church before being called to First Baptist Church of Crystal Springs in 1973. He was privileged to remain with that same faith family for 41 years, serving primarily as their minister of music. Affectionately referred to as Brother James, he was a constant and joyful presence in the life of its congregation, working with the children, youth, and senior adults. If you were involved in any of the following groups or events, Brother James is a fixture in your memories: Kids’ Praise, Music Makers, Young Musicians, Proclaimers, Youth Cue trips, senior adult “mystery” trips, Golden Choir, Glory Bells, Bells of Inspiration, and countless orchestras and quartets. After his retirement in 2013, he and his wife moved to Brandon to be nearer to his grandchildren. There, he and Loretta became active members of Brandon Baptist Church where he was able to enjoy being a choir member for a change. He continued using his gifts leading revivals and filling in as interim music minister in several churches, including Center Terrace in Canton at the time of his death.
He is survived by his wife, Loretta Garrison Beasley; as well as a son, Lane (Laura) Beasley, of Jackson; and two daughters, Sarah (Trey) Rein and Anna (Daniel) Mortimer, both of Brandon. Other survivors include the nine grandchildren he delighted in: Isaac, Marcus, Vivian, Eliza, John Ready, Stuart, Charlotte, Lois, and Jack; and a sister, Anita Milner (Herman), of Anderson, S.C.
In addition to his public life of ministry, James had many other proud accomplishments and virtues: Founder and president of the “Baby Makes Three” chapter of The Andy Griffith Rerun Watchers Club; longtime sportswriter and weekly devotional columnist (“Springs of Living Water:) for The Meteor; proud member of The Mississippi Singing Churchmen; lover of rainy weather, old cars, and all things sports-related; faithful attendee of the Beasley Family Reunion and family president several years; collector of jokes, book excerpts, YouTube clips, Dennis the Menace, and Little Rascals episodes to be shared with willing family members; storyteller and book-reader extraordinaire; and Boppa to his nine beloved grandchildren.
James aspired much of his adult life to be an author, beginning the first chapter of his novel many times. While he would have said he never accomplished this goal, God used his life to write beautiful stories in the lives of hundreds, if not thousands, of people. But most of all, God authored the story of a strong, loving family that continues this next chapter with sadness but great hope in the Savior James taught them to love.
The family wishes to express appreciation to the ICU staff at Baptist Hospital for their care and kindness during his brief stay.
The family requests that any donations in James’ memory be made to The Redeemer’s School, 640 East Northside Drive, Jackson, MS 39206.