Graveside service for James Daniel Arrington, 82, of Boyd is 11:00 AM Tuesday at Boyd Cemetery.
A brief overview of the life of James Daniel Arrington as seen by his brother
James Daniel Arrington, usually called Jim or Jimmy Dan, passed away on May 2, 2021. He was 82 years of age.
He was preceded in death by his parents Gus and Flossie Arrington, by his brothers Gus Arrington, Jr, and Jack Nolan Arrington, by his stepson Brent Carey Barber, and by his first wife of 56 years, Dorothy June Arrington.
He is survived by his current wife Virginia Zorns Arrington, his son Jimmy Earl Arrington, a stepson Brad Allen Barber and by a brother, Eddie Arrington, as well as numerous nieces and nephews.
Jim served in the National Guard for several years, and was a pastor of several different Assembly of God churches until his retirement. He spent most of his life in service to others, including nearly 10 years of caring for his wife Dorothy June as she slowly died with complications from Alzheimer’s disease while at the same time, he was virtually the only support for his brother Gus who was dying from cancer.
Jim was always a good worker, and was never was afraid of hard work. However, he was always willing to learn new things. One of the most impressive things he ever did was to learn how to set up and run a Computer Numerically Controlled machine, which is a programmable machine that is capable of automatically performing the operations of machining. This involved learning how to program the machine, then to set up the tools so the machine can form very complicated parts. He went to our brother to learn the basic math involved and then he learned how to use and place the tools. At the time, he was one of only a few hundred people in America who could do this. I was very proud of him for this accomplishment, but our brother Gus, who knew even better than I did, how difficult this accomplishment was, was not only proud of him, but was astounded that he could pull it off.
Not all of Jim’s ideas worked so well. Jim was born near the end of the great depression, and like most kids raised in that time, he knew how to create makeshift toys. One of the most prized toys was a handle from a mop or a broom, which made excellent stick horses. However, Jim was always looking for ways to improve things. On one occasion he found an improvement for the stick horse situation. In our backyard we had a 50-gallon barrel of kerosene mounted on two X shaped stands, which raised the barrel about three feet off the ground. Jim discovered that he could make a more realistic horse if he put a cloth on the barrel and mounted it like a real horse. This worked very well, but it worked so well that he began learning how to do tricks on his new version of the stock horse. We had seen in the Roy Rogers movies how the cowboy could ride beside the bad guys and jump off his horse to pull the bad guys to the ground. This seemed like a bit of genius – until he tried it. What he failed to take into consideration was the wire clothes line that ran right beside the kerosene barrel. He stood on his new horse to attempt a daring leap to dismount the bad guy, and made his leap only to discover the clothes line on the way down. He made this discovery when the clothes line caught his neck right under the chin, which caused his feet to fly up almost as high as his head, and then, just to make a bad situation worse, the clothes line turned him loose so that he fell about four feet to the ground. He landed flat on his back, which knocked the breath out of him. He struggled for the longest time to get his breath back, and then he let out a blood curdling scream of pain and anger. I, not in complete sympathy with his situation, was rolling on the ground convulsed with laughter, when our mother came out the door. Two things followed, neither of which I agreed with. First, Mom came running to give aid and comfort to Jim, and then she beat me soundly because she assumed I was the reason for all this only because I was the only one enjoying the performance. In retrospect, I suppose it was worth it. Jim was not badly injured, and now, over 70 years later, I still burst out laughing when I remember this story.
All in all, Jim had a good life. He gave his heart to the Lord at a young age, has known the love of two great women, and has been privileged to have a son and two step sons, and several grandchildren. I loved and respected Jim with all my heart, and will miss him deeply, but not for long. Very soon I will join him again in the land where we will never again be separated.
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