United States Marine Corps Pearl Harbor Survivor, James Monroe Sellers of Savannah died Wednesday, July 13, 2011 at Hospice Savannah surrounded by his loving family.
Born in Lumberton, North Carolina, to the late Arthur Melton Sellers and Mae Tillman Sellers, he moved to Appling County at an early age, where he lived on a farm near the Altamaha River in an area known as Eason’s Bluff/Zion Baptist Church Community. He joined the United States Marine Corps at age 19 and had basic training at Parris Island. He also trained on the beaches of Hilton Head Island. He was shipped to Hawaii and had only been there a few days when Pearl Harbor was attacked on December 7, 1941, on his assignment with the USS Henderson. Following Pearl Harbor he served on Johnson Island for about eighteen months, then to Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, in 1943. From there he went to Seattle, Washington by train and was shipped to Solomon Island, then to Saipan, and Tienein with the 4th Defense Battalion Anti-Aircraft Company H from 1943 through 1945. He was honorably discharged on November 23, 1945.
After his service with the United States Marine Corps he returned to Baxley for one year. He married his sweetheart, the former Geneva Miles, on November 23, 1946. They then moved to Monterey, California where he planned to work in the oil fields. He worked for about a year and a half in the fish cannery in Monterey. He then worked civil service at Ford Ord at Monterey Bay, California for over ten years. He and his family moved to Savannah in October 1957, and he worked with Johns Manville Corporation until his retirement as a shipping supervisor in November 1982 at age sixty-two. In retirement, he was an avid vegetable and flower gardener. He enjoyed sharing the fruits of his labor with his family, friends, and neighbors.
He was an active member of the Wildwood United Methodist Church for many years where he held numerous leadership positions. He attended the Coastal Walk to Emmaus #4. He was a Mason.
He was preceded in death by his loving wife of fifty-nine years, Geneva Miles Sellers; and son, Michael Sellers.
He is survived by his daughter and son in law, Deborah and Henry Whitfield, of Savannah; daughter in law, Linda Sellers of Garden City; granddaughter, Alison Selman and her husband Scott, of Savannah; great grandson, Jackson Selman; his brother, Gerald G. Sellers of Savannah; several cousins, nieces and nephews, and his faithful lab, Kisses.
Visitation was held from 5:00 p.m. to7:00 p.m. on Friday, July 15, 2011 at Fairhaven Funeral Home, Hubert C. Baker Chapel, 7415 Hodgson Memorial Drive, Savannah.
Graveside Services were at 2:00 p.m., Saturday, at Forest Lawn Memory Gardens – Isle of Remembrance Section, with the Reverend Jim Rush officiating with military honors.
Remembrances may be made to Hospice Savannah, P.O. Box 13190, Savannah, Georgia 31416; Wildwood United Methodist Church, 4912 Garrard Avenue, Savannah, Georgia 31405, the Humane Society for Greater Savannah, 7215 Sallie Mood Drive, Savannah, Georgia 31406, or the donor’s charity of choice.