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Dr. James England Jr.

CHAPIN -- A funeral mass for Dr. James Edward England Jr., 67, will be 11 a.m. Tueday, July 10, 2007, at Our Lady of the Lake Caholic Church, 195 Amick's Ferry Road, Chapin. Committal services will follow at 4 p.m. at the Great Salkehatchie Cemetery, Highway 301, Ulmer. A wake service with rosary will take place at 6:30 p.m. Monday, followed by visitation at 7 p.m. at Our Lady of the Lake's Ignatius Hall. Father Joseph Wahl will perform the funeral mass, with Deacon Joe Biviano assisting.

A beloved husband, father and granddaddy, Jim passed away on July 6, 2007. Born April 22, 1940 in Warren County, Va., Jim was the son of the late Lillian Frances Carroll England and James England Sr. He grew up in Rock Hill, where he earned the Boy Scouts of America's Eagle Scout rank. After his 1958 graduation from Rock HIll High School, Jim attended the University of Philadelphia for one academic year on a full Naval ROTC scholarship. He spent the following summer on a naval ship off the coast of Canada before returning to South Carolina to be closer to his family.

On August 4, 1962, Jim married Sara Carolyn Thomas of the Big Fork section of Barnwell County, S.C., at St. Anne Catholic Church in Rock Hill, and in 1963 he graduated from the University of South Carolina with a B.S. in psychology. Pursuing his dream to become a physician, Jim then attended the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, where he graduated in 1971. The following year he was hired by Lexington County Hospital (now Lexington Medical Center) as the first doctor to staff its brand new emergency room, a position he held with dedication for nearly 20 years. A respected physician and exceptional diagnostician, Jim was appointed to the S.C. Retirement Systems Medical Board, which he faithfully served for more than 14 years.

To those whose lives he touched, Jim was better known as jack-of-all-trades, with a near encyclopedic memory. He liked to teach and share his wide-ranging expertise with others, particularly his children. Jim was a history buff, an outdoors enthusiast who raised chickens, catfish and bream and could identify nearly any type of plant, animal or constellation; a home-repair guru; and a whiz at knowing how to stretch a dollar. He was adventurous -- in his youth, he practiced martial arts and raced cars before doing either was widely popular. He could build and fix just about anything and he enjoyed tinkering with just about everything from cars, tractors and guns, to his computer, the Internet and the stock market. As one friend put it, "He was the only person I knew who could have grease under his fingernails one minute and scrub in the ER the next."

A very enthusiastic gardener, Jim loved to give away his goods (most notably tomatoes, zucchini and squash) along with recipe advice on how to prepare his vegetables. He faniced himself a great cook and took pelasure in experimenting in the kitchen, much to his family's veiled amusement, and he loved a good midnight snack. Jim was a great conversationalist who often asked a plethora of questions about whatever topic was at hand. His dry, witty sense of humor helped him weather many a presidential adminsitration (he was an armchair political analyst) and Gamecock football season, since he was a loyal fan who simultaneously swore by and smirked at the old saying, "wait 'til next year."

He leaves behind his dear wife of 44 years, Carolyn Thomas England of Chapin; his daughter and son-in-law, Lil and John Hayes of Chapin; his daughter, Carrie England of Atlanta; his young grandchildren, Jack and Caroline Hayes of Chapin; his brother and sister-in-law, Matthew and Norma England of Rock Hill; his sister, Barbara Wallace of Rock Hill; his mother-in-law, Sara Thomas of Ulmer; his sisters-in-law, Phyllis Herring of Bamberg and Camille Thomas of Barnwell; several nieces and nephews; and his devoted dog, Robby. He was predeceased by a son, Jimmy.

In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to the American Diabetes Association, the Palmetto Chapter of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, 3608 Landmark Drive #C, Columbia, S.C. 29204, or to the charity of one's choice.

Jim's family wishes to thank their relatives and friends for the tremendous support and love that has been shown to them during this time, as well as the physicians, nurses and staff at Lexington Medical Center, who provided him with compassionate care during his final days.

Mole Funeral Home of Barnwell is assisting the family with these arrangements.