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James Edward Campbell Jr. "Jim/Sonny" left this earth for his new heavenly home on February 6, 2024. He was born on October 8, 1947 to James Edward Campbell Sr. and Grace Edith Campbell, nee Rupert, in Batavia, New York. Jim spent his early life in many states traveling with his parents, sister, and paternal grandparents often looking for better paying work. He lived in many places such as Indiana, Illinois, New Mexico, Arizona, and then migrated back to New York for his high school graduation from Alexander High School. Jim joined the Navy in his senior year and promptly left for seas unseen after graduation. He was a Patriotic American and Navy lifer who thoroughly enjoyed his time rolling over the ocean waves. He served his country proudly in Vietnam and was stationed at bases in Japan, Germany, and Florida. He was trained in electrical engineering and later IT work. After leaving the Navy he made his way to Maryland and worked for Koppers, NSA, Eagle Alliance, and Heward Packard, finally retiring to fulfill his passion for model railroading, T-Bird traveling, and camping with his grands.
Jim enjoyed and pursued many hobbies. Computers, stamp and coin collecting, camping, T-Bird traveling, and of course model railroading. He was a fantastic handyman and built homes in both Virginia and Florida. He thoroughly enjoyed tinkering with his model railroad display in the man cave basement. His love of trains started in early childhood and continued until the day he left this earth. He was a Cub Scout Den Leader and Boy Scout Master. He could try his hand at almost anything and was always successful at whatever it was. The love of his life, his 2002 Baby Blue Thunderbird, brought him more joy than the stuffed crust pizza he indulged in every chance he got. His love of Thunderbirds and their port hole windows started as teenager and continued all his life. If he could take it to Heaven with him, I'm sure he would! The Thunderbird purchase was his retirement present to himself and he took meticulous care of it. It accompanied him to many T-Bird conventions where he took great pride in showing it off!! If he allowed you to drive it, you know you were one of his most loved people in the world!
Jim was the man that every parent WANTS to marry their daughter and the man they WANT to be the father to their grandchildren. There was not a man more loving than Jim Campbell and he showed this love to those who were important to him 24 hours a day 7 days a week. Jim met, was chased down, and finally agreed to marry Mary Julia Campbell, nee Ammons and together they shared 43 years, 6 children and too many grands to count. His wife kept him on his toes and for sure led him astray in every endeavor they encountered. He didn't stand a chance against her hard-core take-charge personality and loved her all the more for it. He was her savior and there was never another that could even compare to him. She often tells the story that she married him for her ticket out of the city however she married him because he was the only one for her and he proved that each and every day. Jim was the "father" or "daddy" to many; not only his six. There wasn't a child he met and did not love instantly. His many nieces and nephews were aways at the house wanting Jim-Jim to play. And he always did. His house was filled with children whom either were a part of the family already or were going to be a part of it eventually. He never complained about the house being full or the food being gone or the noise being loud; he was just so grateful to have a house full of people to come home to. He was simply the best of the best. Jim never met a stranger. Anyone who even said "hi" ran the risk of him liking you so much that you would become a lifelong friend. His laid back and super friendly personality made it easy to instantly love him. We cannot imagine life without him.
Being able to love any and many children was to Jim's benefit. He is the father of 6, the "dad" of probably 60 more and the pop-pop of too many to count-all of whom he loved beyond measure. He is survived by sons Donald Michael Campbell, wife Kathy, Steven James Campbell, wife Brandy, daughters Jamie Elaine Campbell, partner Dre Dotson and Brittany Beth Lynn Dolch, husband Mike Dolch, he is pre-deceased by sons Daniel Scott Campbell and Stuart "Wally" Campbell, Also surviving are many loving out-laws...err in-laws; Rebecca "Aunt Becky" Skinner, Amanda "Manda" Wright, Danielle "Aunt Dani" & Brian Tholen, Stephanie "Aunt Steph" & Steve Ruff and Nicole Payne. There are so many nieces and nephews we can hardly remember all their names but what we do remember is that they all wanted to be around Jim-Jim whether if it was camping, Scouts, train training, or just hanging out. He is survived by grandchildren: Kyle Jonathan Frank, Cody Seth Campbell, Wayne David (Woo) Bessling, Lily Marie Wright, Luciana (Luci) Kacie Campbell, DeAndre Dwight Burks, Connor David Skinner, Amiyah Brielle Holloway, Sophia Rose Wright, Amir Michael Dotson, Amari Darrell Dotson, Brian Lawrence Tholen Jr., Mikah Nicholas Dolch, Mikaela Nicole Dolch, Kinzlee Michelle Dolch, Bryson Michael Dolch, Lacy Rae Bernhardt, Faith LeeAnn Bernhardt, Riley Aleena Bernhardt, Dahlia Grace, Zane Ibrahim, and Zahara Mae Wright-Mohammed. His grandchildren, the light of his life, will all miss him terribly.
As we say our final good-byes, we want everyone to know that this man lived his life to serve and to provide for those he loved. He never cared about himself, only what he could do for others. He was truly the man of men and we will never forget him.
In lieu of flowers the family requests tributes/donations be made in his name to:
Arundel Lodge Inc. 2600 Solomons Island Rd. Edgewater, MD 21037