James "Jim" Glendon Staley, 77, of Murfreesboro, Tennessee passed away on December 30, 2017. He was preceded in death by his parents James Hansford and Mary Magdalene Foster Staley, doting aunt Caroline Foster; brother Otis Staley; and sisters Thelma Staley Kirrane, Carrie Staley Workman, and Dorothy Staley.
He is survived by his wife of 54 years, Bobbie Nell Allen Staley; daughter Sharon (Robert) Dunn of Cumming, GA, granddaughters Kaitlin Rose Dunn of Seattle, Washington and Rachel Elizabeth Dunn of Cumming, GA, and grandson Alexander Scott Dunn (Tiffany) of Bloomington, IL; son James Allen Staley of Columbia, TN; daughter-in-law Melissa Liggett Staley, and grandson Eli You-Bao Staley of Franklin, TN.
He is also survived by nieces June Ziegenfuss of Portsmouth, VA and Reggie Houk of Smithville, TN, nephew Dennis (Sharon) Staley (Detroit, MI); great nieces and nephews Cathy (Gary) Beltz of Smithville, TN, Glendon Houk of Smithville, TN, and Joy (James) Houk-Raper of Lascassas, TN; great, great nieces and nephews David (Darlene) Griffith (Smithville, TN), Whitney Houk (Smithville, TN), and Carlee and Caroline Hall of Lascassas, TN; and brother-in-laws Willie B. Allen of Donaldson, TN and George Sellars Allen of Alexandra, TN.
Jim was born on June 18, 1940 in Smithville, TN. The youngest of five children and named after his father, he was fondly called ‘Little Jimmy’ or ‘Pops.’ Jim attended Cumberland University where he met Bobbie and was known simply as ‘Staley.’ He went on to attend the University of Tennessee (UT) where he obtained his undergraduate, masters, and PhD in horticulture and developed a passion for UT football which he maintained throughout his life.
Upon graduating in 1970, Jim became the first horticulturist at Memphis State University (MSU). He had a love for horticulture and people and brought the two together as he helped expand and diversify the MSU Physical Plant grounds department and beautify the campus.
In 1977, Jim became Middle Tennessee State University’s (MTSU) horticulturist and joined the faculty as Associate professor in the Agriculture department. In later years he served as Director of both Physical Plant and Murphy Center. Throughout his career, Jim served on various city beautification committees and was a member of Kiwanis. Jim retired in 1998 and he and Bobbie moved to Gallatin, TN where he fulfilled his dream of living on Old Hickory Lake to pursue his love of fishing. In 2016 they moved back to Murfreesboro, TN to be closer to family.
Jim was a dedicated husband, father, and grandfather and was extremely generous with friends, family, and those in need. He was a man of integrity and a devout Christian and served as a deacon and elder at Northminster Presbyterian Church in Murfreesboro and Gallatin Presbyterian Church. Jim struggled with health issues for two decades and will be remembered for his unwavering faith, strength, and will to survive.
Visitation will be held at Northminster on Tuesday, January 2, 2018 at 11:00 with the funeral service following at 1:00 at Northminster Presbyterian Church all in Murfreesboro, TN. Rev. Marshall Gupton will officiate. A graveside service will follow in Talley Cemetery in Alexandria, TN, at 3:00 p.m.
Woodfin Funeral Chapel in Murfreesboro is in charge of the arrangements,