In Memoriam: James “Jimmy” Vann Eakins
God needed a farmer so He picked Jimmy Eakins. Jimmy left Lower Cape Fear Hospice Care Center Sunday, June 12, 2016 for his eternal trip to heaven after a 15 year courageous battle with Parkinson ‘s disease. Following his graduation from Atkinson High School in 1953, Jimmy began serving a tour of duty in the U.S. Army. During his time in the military he was called home to take over the family farm due to his father’s illness.
Jimmy leaves behind his loving and devoted wife of 56 years, Hazel Kelly Eakins; daughter, (his joy) Teri Lynn Eakins; sister, Anne H. Eakins; sister-in-law, Joan Porter; brother-in-law, Wayne Kelly; special cousin, John David Eakins; caregivers, Mary and B. J. McDuffie; and extended family and friends of which, many who helped care for Jimmy during his lengthy illness. Jimmy loved farming and doing good deeds for others. He was a life long member of Atkinson Baptist Church where he served as a deacon and trustee. Jimmy was a charter member of Atkinson Volunteer Fire Department. He was active in the community, serving on several community boards; chairman of Pender County ASCS Board (now Farm Service Agency), a Board Supervisor for Pender Soil and Water Conservation District, and serving on Pender County Farm Bureau Board. Jimmy loved his entire family and friends with all of his heart and showed his love to them everyday. He will be remembered for his gentlemanly character and his love for God. With God’s help Jimmy was a successful farmer and loved nothing better than tilling the soil on the family’s three generation farm.