James Andrew Mayes
James Andrew Mayes, age 81 of Chicago, IL died January 15, 2019, in Litchfield Park, AZ. He was born May 3, 1937, in Chicago, IL to Nathan and Myrtle Mayes. James grew up in Chicago and was a true Cubs fan. He worked for R J Reynolds until his retirement.
Humble, kind, considerate, and funny, James was the finest father, husband, son, and friend that anyone could wish for. He was nice to everyone he met and fully committed to his wife and family. As a young father, he would frequently gather his sons along with other neighborhood children and head to the park to play baseball. Once he was there he took the time to teach them the fundamentals of the game, such as how to hit, throw a curveball, and steal a base. Although baseball was his passion, he always supported his son’s love of basketball and frequently took time to play with him. His support of his son grew as he watched him develop into a great basketball player. James also had a presence in his community. He served as a cub scout leader for several years and contributed both time and money to his local parish. He faithfully taught his sons the value of doing things to serve others.
James loved fishing and was a wonderful cook. His barbecued ribs and chicken were memorable. He had a strong group of lifelong friends that he met for breakfast every Wednesday morning until his illness prohibited him from gathering with them. His strong moral compass and loyalty gave him the strength to endure the loss of his beloved wife, Winona; son, Kevin; and mother, Myrtle within a very short time period.
Although his grandchildren were not blessed to always live close to him, they remember his soothing, pleasant voice. He showed an interest in them no matter where they were living. They always ended a conversation with him feeling better about things. His life was a testament to his words, “Be true to yourself and your family.”
James is survived by his son, Jamie L. Mayes; daughter-in-law, Cathey L. Mayes; brother, Donald Mayes; four grandchildren, Lauren Mayes, Madison Mayes, Raquel Harp; and R’mand Harp; and great-grandchild, Xavier Lasua. He was preceded in death by his wife, Winona Mayes, and son, Kevin Mayes.