James Richards Sr.
Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 3, 2009
Mr. James Edward Richards Sr. entered into eternal rest, on Nov. 1, 2009, at Autumn Care Nursing Home.
“Doc” or “Bubber,“ as he was affectionately called by family and friends, was born in Suffolk on Aug. 30, 1920, to the late James L. Richards and the late Annie Biggs Richards.
“Doc” owned and operated Suffolk Professional Pharmacy for 35 years. He graduated from South Carolina University in 1942 with a major in chemistry and after a tour in the army during World War II, he entered Howard University, where he completed a BS degree in Pharmacy.
“Doc” led a busy and meaningful life and participated in many church, civic and social activities. Some of the activities included: serving on the board of directors of the Nansemond Credit Union; vice president of the board of directors of the Retail Merchants Association, member of the Suffolk Planning Commission; and member of the Fairgrounds Plan Steering Committee. He was a proud member of the Alpha Iota Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity for over 65 years and received the chapter’s first Founders Award in 2006. He was also a member of the Booker T. Washington Alumni Association and a charter member of the booster club.
His church affiliation was with First Baptist Church, Mahan Street, where he has been a member for over 75 years. “Doc” served as chairperson of the Board of Trustees for many years and was on the Maintenance and Improvement Committee and the Finance Committee.
He was predeceased by his wife, Athalia “Thala” Joyner Richards, in 2007. They had been married for 64 years, and she was always the love of his life.
He is survived by three children, James Jr (Ophelia), Ann (Curtis) and Patricia Lynn (John); five grandchildren, Andre (Nadine), Steven James (Anjana), Christopher, Chandra and Jay Edward; and three great grandchildren, Julien and Jacques Kearns and Kiran Joyner Richards.
A wake will be held at First Baptist Church, 112 Mahan Street on Thursday, Nov. 5, from 6 to 8 p.m. Viewing will be at the church from 5 to 6 p.m. Reflections can be shared at the wake by family and friends, followed by Omega’s Psi Phi Memorial Service.
The homecoming celebration will also be held at First Baptist Church on Friday at noon. Interment will be at Holly Lawn Cemetery in Suffolk immediately following the service. Dinner will be served at the church for family and friends after the interment.
The family has established a scholarship fund in memory of both James E and Athalia J Richards. Donations will be accepted in the name of Suffolk Professional Pharmacy Scholarship Fund.