James N. Greer, 82, always returned from trips with gifts for his girls

James N. Greer

James N. Greer, 82, of Virginia Beach, left this world Sunday, April 19, 2020. Born Jan. 30, 1938, to Norvin Louis Greer and RosaLee Branch Greer in Lexington, Missouri, James grew up in Marshall, Missouri.

He loved to tell stories of growing up with his mother and two sisters. His father passed away when James was 5 years old, so his mother placed him and his older sister with the nuns while she went to beauty school. There were stories of street lights being shot out with B.B. guns, stealing the communion wine, being accused of letting the nun’s bird out of the cage and piano lessons in exchange for alcohol for the nuns. His mother later remarried and his stepdad, Bill Rodgers, was a great father figure and gentleman.

James joined the U.S. Army National Guard at age 17 by forging his mother’s signature. Later, he joined the U.S. Navy with two of his childhood friends. The U.S. Navy proved to be a career of travel and led him to meet Sandra Jean in California. Sandra Jean was the sister-in-law of his boss. They married after a brief courtship and had three daughters. Virginia Beach became his last assignment when the USS Nimitz was being built. He got out of the service just as the USS Nimitz was to deploy out to sea. Twenty years in the service was followed by 20 years civil service with his occupation always being aviation supply and logistics.

James loved to read and loved history. He was excited to move to Virginia Beach with all the history associated with the area. The family would pack into the car to visit locations of the Norfolk tour, Jamestown or Williamsburg. He enjoyed taking the girls to the movies or circus and bringing them back Cracker Jacks or candy bars when he went to the barber shop. He never returned from a trip without gifts for his girls.

James and Sandra Jean divorced and James married Mary Frances. Together, they traveled to Hawaii for business several times. After retirement, they moved to Snug Harbor, North Carolina, and gardened in their leisure. They returned to Virginia Beach in 2002. They enjoyed going out to eat and getting together with family.

James is survived by his three daughters and their families, Jennifer Greer Harris and Scott, Jenelle Charles and David, Sonia Greer Limon and David; grandchildren, Wesley Owens, Spencer Owens, Marina Garvey and Will, Presley Limon and Quentin Limon; and great-grandson, Justin Owens; as well as his younger sister, Connie Laurie, and John; and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; sister, Carol Greer; and the love of his life, Mary.

James requested that no funeral be held. The family will have a celebration of life at a later date.

Share online condolences with the family at Cremation Society of Virginia.

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