Jim Mace

Jim Mace, born May 14, 1930, died Jan. 8, 2018, at Jones County Rest Home inEllisville.

Services will be at 1 p.m. Friday at Memory Chapel with visitation beginning at 11 a.m. Interment will follow at Big Creek Baptist Cemetery. Dr. Kevin Shearer, Pastor of 38th Avenue Baptist Church in Hattiesburg, will be officiating.

CDR “Jim” Mace graduated from high school in Luling, Texas in May 1947, enlisting in the Navy the following month. He initially served as a “Bluejacket” and in 1960 and was commissioned as an officer. As a naval officer, he served aboard a host of Navy ships, such as destroyers, mine sweepers, supply ships and a submarine ballistic missile research ship. He commanded the USS Bluebird (MSC-121), USS Pinnacle (MSO-462), USS Charleston (AK-113)  and the USS Compass Island (AG-153).

Heserved in Vietnam from April 1967 to March 1968, fulfilling the mine force motto, “Wherethe Navy goes, we’ve been.” During this tour of duty, as the Officer-In-Charge of MineSquadron 11, Detachment “Alfa,” his unit was awarded the first Presidential UnitCitation from Lyndon B. Johnson, President of the United States, and he was alsoawarded a Bronze Star with a Combat “V” for leadership in Vietnam. After retiring fromthe Navy, Jim tried his hand growing chickens for Wayne Farms and later worked untilretirement as the Manager of the USM bookstore.

Mississippi not only is the state where Jim completed his Naval career, raised chickens for the first time, but it where his eternity changed — when he came to know Christ Jesus as his personal LORD and Savior at Big Creek Baptist Church in March 1978. Jim served as an adult Sunday School teacher and on many committees over the years.

Jim was preceded in death by his father and mother James A. and Dora (Allen) Mace; sisters Sissie Youngblood and Wyone Tilly; granddaughter Brittney Mace; grandson Chris Mace and beloved wife of 55 years Martha L. Mace.

He is survived by his daughter Beverly (James) Shearer of Laurel; Dr. James (Alena) Mace of Lebanon, Ind.; sister Beth (George) Miles, Huntsville, Texas; grandsons J. Matthew (Melanie) Shearer of Severn, Md, Micheal (Allison) Shearer of Baltimore, Md. and Cory Mace of Gulfport; granddaughters Michelle (Chris) Valeika of Atlantic, Iowa, and Adrainne (Paul) Aufdenberg of Red Oak, Iowa; and his precious great-grandchildren Joshua, Brianna, Haylee, Savanna, Lily, Jamison, Isla and Evelyn.

Pallbearers will be Matthew Shearer, Michael Shearer, Cory Mace, Robert Barber, Thomas Knight and Jeff Hollingsworth.

To sign the online guestbook, visit www.memorychapellaurel.com.