Dr. James Welch

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Dr. James E. “Jim” Welch, a psychiatrist in Las Cruces, N.M., died on August 5, 2009 after a lengthy illness and stays at Good Samaritan and La Posada of Mesilla Valley Hospice.
James E. Welch was born on June 17, 1924 in Los Angeles, Calif. to Earl and Lucille Sine Welch. The Welch family later moved to North Carolina and then to Virginia where Jim attended schools in Suffolk and graduated from Suffolk High School.
Jim subsequently attended Virginia Tech for one semester before joining the Army Air Corps. During his military service, Jim was stationed on Guam and flew many missions over Japan, proudly serving his country as a navigator. After the war, Jim returned to North Carolina and enrolled at Duke University where he received his M.D. Jim married the former Joyce Laybourn and they lived in Denver, where Jim practiced general medicine. Jim went on to complete a residency in psychiatry and spent the remainder of his professional career as an esteemed and well-loved psychiatrist.
Jim and his family moved to Las Cruces in 1969 and he opened a private practice in psychiatry.
In March of 1991, Jim married Mary Mathers of Las Cruces and together for the years to come, the couple became a viable part of the Las Cruces Community.
Jim is survived by his wife, Mary; his sister, Frances Tuthill, of Albuquerque; daughters Julie Schultz (Kurt), of Parker, Colo., Holly Finlay, of Albuquerque, and son James (Susan), of Steamboat Springs, Colo. He is also survived by his stepdaughter, Laura Conniff (John), of Las Cruce,s and his stepson, Les Mathers, of Morton, Ill. In addition, Jim is survived by grandchildren Clint and Natalie Schultz, Alex and Matthew Finlay, Zoe Welch, and step-grandchildren Ryan Paulowsky (Whitney), Sarah Rice (Cameron) and Lindsay, Katie and Tom Mathers. Jim also leaves behind a great-granddaughter, Mary Kiley Paulowsky, a niece, Martha Cook (John), and a nephew, Jon Tuthill (Gail).
A memorial service for Dr. Welch was held on Friday, Aug. 7, 2009 in Las Cruces.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that those who wish to do so honor Jim with a donation to New Mexico State University Foundation: NMSU Foundation, Inc. P.O. Box 3590 Las Cruces, NM 88003-3590 or Mesilla Valley Hospice: 299 E. Montana Las Cruces, NM 88005.