James “Arvie” McDougald
James McDougald was born on June 14, 1933 in Dillon County, South Carolina to the late Leroy and Annie Hamilton McDougald. He departed this life on October 2, 2020 at his home.
He attended the public schools of Robeson County North Carolina, graduating from Rowland’s Southside High School in 1951. After high school, he followed his brothers’ path and enrolled in North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University in Greensboro, North Carolina. After graduation in 1955, he enlisted in the United States Army where he served for three years. Upon his separation from the military after an honorable discharge, he moved to Newark, New Jersey where he was employed by Hatfield Wire and Cable in Linden, New Jersey for approximately 30 years before retiring. James then found employment with the New Jersey Transit System where he worked until retirement. He then moved home to Rowland, NC and became active in the community.
James spent his early and teen years in Cedar Grove United Methodist Church (now New Hope UMC) and made his confession to Christ at an early age. After moving to New Jersey, he attended St. James African Methodist Episcopal Church and Israel Memorial African Methodist Episcopal Church. After his return to Rowland, he once again began attending and working in New Hope UMC. He was a faithful and devoted member. At New Hope he worked with the United Methodist Men, Church Trustee, Pastor Parish Relations Committee and food pantry. He was a caring, compassionate man who was always willing to help when needed.
James loved photography and became the family’s official photographer. At gatherings you would always find him with a camera in hand documenting the event and attendees. He also enjoyed repairing televisions and radios. He even had a shop in his basement in New Jersey where he operated a part time business. He supplied many family members and friends with a “TV” before they were affordable or commonplace.
James always had a smile on his face and amusing words to make you laugh. His charisma was an innate magnet and he was often the epicenter of conversations. He loved his family and enjoyed visiting them when possible. Even when his health began to fail, he still found the strength to keep his daily routine and continued to visit his family and friends.
James was preceded in death by his parents, Annie and Leroy McDougald; Wife, Ernestine Suggs McDougald; Siblings, Essie Mae McDougald, Hoover McDougald, Jacob McDougald, Leroy McDougald, Vera McDougald Carmichael and Portia McDougald Bluitt; and Nephew Oswell “Stan” Faulk.
He leaves to cherish his memories: Two sons - Jacob Preston Parnell and Lamont McNair; Four grandchildren – Jahquil Gary, Lamont J. McNair, Janai A. McNair and Laniyah E. McNair; Five nieces – Minnie Mewborn, Deborah Carmichael, Doris Bluitt, Deborah Glenn and Annette Clark; Two nephews – Franklin McDougald and Daryl McDougald, great nieces and nephews, numerous cousins and many longtime special friends.
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