James Coburn

James William Coburn Sr.

Friday, November 30th, 1934 - Friday, June 26th, 2020
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James William Coburn, Sr. was born in Roanoke Rapids, NC to Nina Mae Hodges Coburn and William Henry Coburn on November 30, 1934. He went to be with the Lord on Friday, June 26, 2020.
CWO2 James William (Billy)(Jim) Coburn, Sr marched to a different drummer. He always wanted to go to military school but his mother and step-father, Early Carroll could not afford to send him to military school and neither could his birth father, William Henry Coburn.
As soon as he graduated from William R. Davie High School in Roanoke Rapids, NC he joined the National Guard. He stayed in the guard for 3 years then switched to the Coast Guard. He loved being in the military and served proudly for 26 years. After the Coast Guard he worked for Moran Towing as Manager of the Shipyard and Port Engineer for 20 years.
He loved the Lord Jesus Christ and he loved discussing the scriptures with David Sanders. He loved his family and his neighbors. He felt God had truly blessed us with our neighbors, children, grandchildren and great-granddaughter, Rozlyn Jay.
In his later years after retiring, he enjoyed gardening. He had a huge garden for a few years and shared some of the bounty with his wonderful neighbor Karen Gleason until he began having medical problems and he had to do less.
He loved life and wondered where the years had gone as we all do when we get older.
He had a great imagination and wrote prolifically. Jim wrote short stories for our Grandson PJ and wrote a complete book, a love story called “Taking Chances”. The locale is in Montana. He had never been to Montana in his travels around the world while in the Coast Guard, but he always wanted to go. He wasn’t able to go physically but he went in his imagination many times.
He was a true Commander. No matter where he went, he took charge. Sometimes I thought people would be offended the way he said and did things, but they were not. They enjoyed his humor, it made them laugh. I am going to miss him terribly, but I know he is with our Lord and out of his pain and ready for his new body.
He loved his country and was very disturbed that so many people in our country now don’t even care about our country. It concerned him that this attitude was going to destroy our country.
We are so grateful for all our neighbors but four of them have been exceptional during his illness helping me, his wife and going to the store for us, coming to help me get him comfortable in his bed. Randy and Karen Gleason and Brandon and Nancy McCarthy. Without them, I don’t know how we could have endured the last few weeks. We are so thankful for all our neighbors but these four excelled. They will have crowns in Heaven. Grace Hospice provided loving, tender care in his last days. They are an amazing organization. Thanks to everyone who assisted us in his last days on this earth.

James William Coburn, Sr. children are daughters, Kimberley Jay Roach (husband, John Roach, Ret. Chesapeake Fire Department) and Kaleen Lawsure; son, James William Coburn, Jr., (wife, Dana Coburn, along with son, James William Coburn, III and daughter, Josie Coburn); step-sons, Terry E. Sanders (deceased), David A. Sanders, Phillip E. Sanders (wife, Lisa and daughter, April), Harold D. Sanders (deceased), and step-daughter, Carol D. Hebden (husband, Paul and sons, Scott and PJ - Paul John); brother, RIchard Coburn (wife, Barbara and children Susan, Kathy and David); half- brother, Roger Coburn (wife, Cammy and daughter, Cammi and son, Christopher).

Graveside service with Military Honors will be conducted on Wednesday, July 1, 2020 at 2pm at Chesapeake Memorial Gardens located at 524 Cedar Road Chesapeake. The family will receive friends at Graham Funeral Home located at 1112 Kempsville Road Chesapeake on Tuesday, June 30 from 6-7:30pm. You may leave condolences to the family at and memorial donations may be made to Grace Hospice located at 236 Clearfield Avenue Suite 209 Virginia Beach, VA 23462.

He will be terribly missed by his wife Willene Coburn and by all of his family and friends.
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Service Details

  • Visitation

    Tuesday, June 30th, 2020 | 6:00pm - 7:30pm
    Tuesday, June 30th, 2020 6:00pm - 7:30pm
    Graham Funeral Home
    1112 Kempsville Road
    Chesapeake, VA 23320
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Service

    Wednesday, July 1st, 2020 | 2:00pm
    Wednesday, July 1st, 2020 2:00pm
    Chesapeake Memorial Gardens
    524 Cedar Road
    Chesapeake, VA 23322
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Interment

    Chesapeake Memorial Gardens
    524 Cedar Road
    Chesapeake, Virginia 23322
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


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