James Clay McFerrin passed from this life on December 12, 2020 at Cookeville Regional Medical Center in Cookeville, TN, just three months after the death of his beloved wife of 62 years, Helen Joyce Davis McFerrin. In light of the current environment, a graveside service will be held on Tuesday, December 15, 2020 at 11 AM at Prosperity Cemetery in Lincoln County, TN with Dwight Fuqua officiating. A virtual memorial will be posted online.
He was the son of the late James Earl and Alta Miriam Rogers McFerrin of Fayetteville, TN. James was born on July 28, 1936 in Belleview, TN on the farm where he lived most of his life. He attended Belleview Elementary School and Central High School in Fayetteville and graduated from Tennessee Tech in 1958 with a degree in Agriculture.
He was employed by the Carnation Company as a dairy field man and then entered active military service with the US Army during the Berlin Wall Crisis of 1961. He returned to Belleview in 1962 and operated a dairy farm with his father until the late 1980’s. He retired from a rural route with the US Postal Service in 2002.
He and Mrs. McFerrin enjoyed their retirement years traveling and exploring the back roads and visiting children and grandchildren. He cultivated a large garden and always had plenty to share with family and friends. He loved to keep up with weather statistics and had a deep interest in genealogy. He compiled a detailed family history dating back to the late 1400’s with not only births and deaths but letters, oral histories, and world events.
His work continued throughout retirement in the form of compiling a lifetime of Sunday morning and Wednesday night Bible studies into two books and a daily bible study program emailed and posted online for well over a thousand recipients. He loved the Lord and His church and was a long-time member of the State Line church of Christ in Lincoln County and for the last three years a member of the Findlay church of Christ in Sparta, TN.
In addition to his wife and parents, Mr. McFerrin was preceded in death by his sister Edna Lois McFerrin, and a brother-in-law, Larry Thomas Dreaden.
James is survived by 2 sons: David Clay (Janice Renee Hitchcock) McFerrin and Nathan James (Sherry Jo Kline) McFerrin; daughter: Miriam Katherine (Michael Lane) Avrit. He is also survived by 15 grandchildren: Alison Beth McFerrin (Christopher Brent) James, Clayton Thomas (Melissa Kate Bivens) McFerrin, Grant James McFerrin, Olivia Anne McFerrin, Brooke Ashley Holland (Christopher Robert) Woodrow, Tara Brianne Holland (Jordan Matthew) DeKeratry, Christopher Michael (Jennifer Lynn Greene) Avrit, Mary Katherine Avrit, Hosanna Joy Avrit (David Michael) Lawson, Joseph Davis (Glorianna Rachel Sapp) Avrit, Seth Jordan Avrit, Elizabeth Rose Avrit, Jonathan Caleb Avrit, Nathaniel Luke Avrit, Isaiah James Avrit; 5 great grandchildren; sister Mildred Frances McFerrin (Jerry Wilford) Smelser and sister-in-law Linda Katherine Davis Dreaden.
In lieu of flowers if you wish, memorial contributions may be made to the State Line church of Christ, 3325 Huntsville Hwy., Fayetteville, TN 37334 or the Findlay church of Christ, 505 N. Spring St., Sparta, TN 38583.
Higgins Funeral Home is honored to be serving the family of James Clay McFerrin.