Obituary of James Elbert Church
James Elbert Church, 89 of Kingsport, entered into eternal life with his Savior on Monday, July 31, 2023. After several months of declining health, James passed away peacefully at his residence surrounded by his loving family. James was born on March 17, 1934, in Watauga County, North Carolina. He was the oldest child and only son of Frank David Church and Grace Esther Cannon Church. At the age of 3, he moved from North Carolina to East Tennessee where he lived the rest of his life. He learned at a young age to work with his hands and this allowed him to be successful as a machinist in the United States Army, at the Kingsport Foundry, and at Reynolds Metal Company. While he retired officially in 1993, he never stopped working, as creating and fixing things was his passion. There were very few things he could not repair, and he loved helping his family, friends, and church with any handyman jobs they needed.
He married the love of his life, Stella Mae Tipton on April 22, 1955. They were married for 63 years until she passed away in 2018. He was a member of Cedar View Independent Methodist Church where he served as a deacon for many years. We are grateful he has been reunited with his wife and they are both now with the Savior they served together for so many years.
James was preceded in death by his parents, Frank and Grace Church; his wife, Stella Church; and his sisters, Esther Stewart, Judy Carty, Ann Horton, and Linda Flanary. He is survived by his two sons, David and wife Connie Church, and Gary Church; four daughters, Kim and husband Barnie Fields, Angie Church, Pam Church, and Susan and husband Jamie Rock; sister, Revonda and husband Bill Chapman; grandchildren, Brandy and husband Evan Gilliam, Davy and wife Adeline Church, Revonda and husband David Harris, Alex and wife Sharon Rogers, Tosha Stewart and boyfriend Stewart Buckley, Holly Fields, April Fields, Justin Church, Addison Alder, Britton Rock, and Celeste Rock; 17 great-grandchildren, Mackenzie, Jaden, Brooklyn, Jeb, Lilly, Jordan, Aleah, Jordan, Elin, Lola, Kaydence, David, Bryan, Eli, Maycee, C.J., and Riley; and special friend, Pam Mellons.
The family would like to give a special “Thank You” to Smoky Mountain Hospice, especially his nurse, Carrie.
The family will receive friends on Thursday, August 3, 2023, from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm at Carter-Trent Funeral Home in Kingsport. A funeral service will be held on Friday, August 4, 2023, at 1:30 pm at Cedar View Independent Methodist Church with Pastor Timothy Strickland and Pastor Robert Fletcher officiating.
A burial will follow the funeral service at Oak Hill Memorial Park. Pallbearers will be Davy Church, Alex Rogers, Justin Church, Jaden Church, Jeb Stewart, and Jordan Stewart. Honorary pallbearers will include Britton Rock, David Harris, Bryan Harris, and C.J. Rogers.
Carter Trent Funeral Home Kingsport is serving the Church family.To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of James Church, please visit Tribute Store