James Craft

James Craft

Saturday November 25, 1933 - Sunday February 14, 2021
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Funeral services for James Albert Craft, 87, of Vidalia, La., will be held on Saturday, February 20, 2021 at 2:00 PM at Vidalia First Baptist Church with Bro. Wes Faulk and Bro. Toney Ganey officiating. Interment will follow at Greenlawn Memorial Park Cemetery, under the direction of Young's Funeral Home. James passed away Sunday after a lengthy illness.

James was born November 25, 1933, in Sartinville, Mississippi, the third son of the late James Cleve Craft and Mary Margana Lumpkin Craft. To know James was to know how deep his faith in Jesus was. He and his wife of 67 years, Donis Bracey Craft, were members of the First Baptist Church of Vidalia, where he was a deacon and taught Sunday school.

James (or “Coach Craft” to so many) first led the “team” of his own four boys, joining them in all kinds of sports in their back yard, the hub of many a neighborhood game. He took those skills to the area fields, where he coached untold number of young men in baseball, basketball and Gray-Y football.

His greatest joy, though, was his family. Everyone knew without a doubt where his priorities were, and his four boys, daughters-in law and grandchildren reigned supreme. He made untold sacrifices for them, but he did so in selfless ways about which most were none the wiser. His boys and grandchildren knew that if he could, James would do what was needed to make it to their games, where he was their most ardent fan.

The longtime Vidalia resident worked at International Paper in Natchez for 45 years, retiring as lab supervisor in 1998. James was a devoted New Orleans Saints and St. Louis Cardinals fan and was thrilled to see in person the two teams play on their respective fields. He enjoyed family trips to the beach and a once-in-a-lifetime flight to Oregon to attend his grandson’s wedding.

James was preceded in death by his parents, his three brothers: Edwy Gene, Kerney (and wife, Nell) Craft, and Hugh Charles Craft; and his great-grandson, Easton Rhodes. He’s survived by his wife, Donis; sister-in-law Carolon Craft; sons Kerry and his wife, Beth, of Monroe; Jerry and his wife, Kym, of Springfield, Mo.; Darrel and his wife, Liz, of Monroe; and Buz and his wife, April, of Vidalia; grandchildren Emily (Eric) Shuey, Brandon (Dana) Craft, Carley Craft, Nina (Clay) Rhodes, Kyle (Lydia) Craft, Spencer (Amelia) Craft, Chandler Wiley, Kayla Craft, Thomas Craft and Will Wiley; great-grandchildren Kylie Drost, Walker Craft, Ridge Rhodes, Cocodrie Craft, Kegan Shuey and Tanner Shuey; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Pallbearers are sons Kerry, Jerry, Darrel and Buz and grandsons Brandon and Spencer.

Honorary pallbearers will be grandsons Kyle Craft, Thomas Craft, Chandler Wiley and Will Wiley; grandsons-in-law Clay Rhodes and Eric Shuey; and great-grandsons, Walker Craft, Ridge Rhodes, Kegan Shuey, and Tanner Shuey.

Visitation will be from 12:00 to 2:00 at Vidalia First Baptist Church. The family is asking all to please wear masks.

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Service Details

  • Interment

    Greenlawn Memorial Park
    Natchez, MS 39120


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Ann Higgs, Gary Higgs, Vicki Higgs Palumbo sent flowers to the family of James Craft.
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Anne LaCroix

Posted at 08:20pm
What a wonderful way to remember Mr. Crafts life. Our condolences. Anne and Him LaCroix
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Dianne Adcox

Posted at 07:58pm
When I think of Mr. Craft, I think of Jesus, family, and sports! I wish I knew how many games he and Mrs Craft sat through-their sons and grandsons and great grandsons!! He always supported them. I don’t believe anything made him happier than having all his family around him. He will be missed by all who knew him, but I rejoice to know we will see him again! “He ran the race, he finished the course, and I know he heard Jesus say “well done, my good and faithful servant!” We love all of you and are praying for you!
Steve and Dianne Adcox

Dawn Franz

Posted at 06:03pm
Growing up in Vidalia myself, we were all a small community family and part of each other’s lives. I remember the many summers with the baseball families. Then, after I married, we had the pleasure of being next door neighbors on Peach Street for many years. We do have many good memories and do hope you all are comforted during this time of adjustment. You are in our prayers. Of course, I look forward to seeing him again in the promised resurrection. That hope is sure and helps us get through these hard times. Our hearts go out to you. Dawn Savoy Franz and Dennis Franz

Ann Higgs, Gary Higgs, Vicki Higgs Palumbo

Posted at 11:51pm
Our heartfelt prayers to you and your family.
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Ann Higgs, Gary Higgs, Vicki Higgs Palumbo purchased flowers for the family of James Craft. Send Flowers


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