Murphy Funeral Homes


James William Pardew Jr.

February 5, 1944June 2, 2021

Col. James W. Pardew, Jr. (U.S. Ambassador and Colonel Ret.) passed away on June 2, 2021 in Arlington. He was born on February 5, 1944 in Memphis to the late James and Frances Pardew. He is survived by his wife, Kathy; sons, Paul (Kelly), Jon (Leslie) and Dave Pardew; and six grand children

James greatest accomplishments were as an ambassador at large and to Bulgaria. He was the involved in negotiating the Ohrid Agreement in Macedonia (01), and was formerly Chief of the Balkan Force in the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy. He was involved in the US mission that brought peace to Bosnia (95) and to Kosovo (99). Prior to his distinguished diplomatic career, he spent over 27 years in the United States Army as an intelligence officer retiring as a Colonel (94). His combat tours include service in Vietnam in 68-69 and Somalia (93). He is the author of the book Peacemakers: American Leadership and the End of Genocide in the Balkans.

The burial will take place at Arlington National Cemetery at a later date.


No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.


James William Pardew Jr.

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Diliana Nikiforova

June 18, 2021

Prima Ballerina, PhD in Art

Dear Mrs. Kathy, Paul, Jon and David,

My sincere condolences.

Only three weeks ago I was in video contact with HE James Pardew. Not only has the World lost a professional dedicated to peace making. The Bulgarian Ballet lost a great supporter and friend.
James Pardew and his wife – Kathy left a bright impact in our National Ballet, especially in the introduction of George Balanchine performances. The performance dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the birth of George Balanchine at the Sofia National Opera was under the patronage of HE the Ambassador of the United States of America James Pardew.

Ambassador Pardew did a lot for the promotion of our ballet in the public space by organizing paintings, sculpture and photography exhibitions at the U.S. Embassy in Sofia. For the authors (most distinguished Bulgarian photographers, artists and sculptors) the main models involved in this initiative were us - ballet artists.
Ambassador Pardew's help also led to the production of ballet performances in Maryan - a village in the Bulgarian Balkans. With the help of my colleagues Maryan Ballet Summer Academy for children has been running for the last 10 years. After the camp tuition we organize two performances with the participation of the children and prima ballerina and prima danseur of the National Ballet – a remarkable and inspiring experience for the small artists and for the audience of Maryan and the surrounding villages.
Not only did James Pardew helped us with personal funds and funds from "America for Bulgaria", but he also got involved by driving the children from one community center to another. He used to joke that he is the best ballet driver.

HE James Pardew, the Ambassador of the United States of America, was due to visit the village of Maryan this year.

Dianna & Larry Duffel

June 15, 2021

Larry and I were so sad when we heard of Jim's passing, but we were so thankful we got to see and visit him for a few minutes in the hospital the day before he died.

We had known Jim since grade school. We grew up together, we partied with Jim and Kathy in our younger married lives. Money was scarce, but we always had fun.

When Jim left Jonesboro to serve in the Army, we didn't see each other often but we kept in touch through Frances, Jim's mother.

It was at the Nettleton school reunion in 2001 that we met again. We made plans to spend Thanksgiving with Jim and Kathy at their home in Virginia. From this time on we would spend many enjoyable times together. Sophia, Paris, Istanbul, Amsterdam and Brussels are all wonderful places Larry and I were privileged to see with Jim and Kathy.

When Jim retired, we continued to see him and Kathy at least once a year. We went to ( 4) Final Four basketball tournaments and enjoyed them so much. Kathy was a whiz at predicting the winners!

As we grew older, we were content to visit them in their home in Fairfax. When Jim became ill and the covid-19 virus hit, weekly phone calls were how we kept in touch. We made plans to visit them for a week-end in April but for some reason the airline cancelled the flight.

We had so much fun together over the years. We had a friendship that we can never forget. I am so thankful and fortunate to have known Jim and Kathy Pardew.

Larry and I will always remember the happy, fun times we shared with you and Kathy.

Rest in peace, dear friend. We will miss you and your infectious laugh!


Tom Moore

June 7, 2021

To Kathy and Family,
When you and Jim visited Jonesboro and Arkansas State University in 2018, after the publication of "Peacemakers," I had the great honor of getting to know you. Jim was a great American, so dedicated to human rights, freedom for all, and professional diplomacy at the highest levels. I was so saddened Thursday when I learned of his passing, such a great loss for you and our country. Please accept my expression of sympathy at this difficult time, and know Jim will long be remembered.

Tom Moore
Walnut Ridge, Arkansas

Erika Chudy

June 7, 2021

Dear Mrs. Kathy, Paul, Jon and David,
The Arkansas State University family was so sad to hear of Mr. Jim's passing. We got word during the Board of Trustees meeting, just as the board was voting on the naming of the Pardew Gallery here in the Bradbury Art Museum. I had so hoped to call Mr. Jim with the news and let him know we will be the stewards that he hoped we would be.

I only got the chance to get to know Mr. Jim in the past few years. I could've spent hours talking with him, listening to his amazing, yet humble, experiences. He was just the type of person that left you feeling more educated, inspired and and hopeful when he spoke. Even on days when he did not have the most positive outlook on America's diplomatic efforts, there was a sense that the ship would right itself because of the groundwork laid by he and so many others through the years. I am so grateful to have known him, and his legacy will go on here at his alma mater in perpetuity.

Boni Bonev

June 7, 2021

Sincere condolences to the whole Pardew family some of whom I had the honor to meet in Sofia while Jim and Kathy were still in Bulgaria!

I wrote recently to Jim and did not get an answer which is not his style. Yesterday I learned that he passed away on June 2nd. How sad!!! I am glad we spoke on the phone back in April.

I will remember Jim as one of the greatest and true friends of Bulgaria and as an example to follow in terms highest integrity and ethical standards. Thanks to his and Kathy's friendship and support (back in 2004) I can still walk on Earth. My family will never forget this!

Jim will remain in the minds and hearts of all honest Bulgarians as someone who opened the pandora box, who spoke about corruption, about state capture and about what needs to be done for Bulgaria to prosper. I will never forget how (years after he left his official job in Bulgaria) people would spot him from quite far while we were taking walks in Vitosha together (with Kathy) and how they would come to thank him for what he did for the country.

And one more thing... I find it a great coincidence that the Magnitsky measures imposed against some of the most notorious wrongdoers in Bulgaria were officially announced on the same date he left us - June 2, 2021. To me this is quite a signal.... what Jim initiated (in his fight FOR Bulgaria) in the dark early 2000s is now bearing the benefit of this beautiful nation and its good people. I trust very much that sanctions will continue to include more and more individuals that stop this country from materializing its potential. I have no doubt that this is Jim's wish as well.


Boni Bonev and sons Jordan, Daren and Alek

Connie Colmer

June 6, 2021

Paul, Jon and David - you are lucky young men to have had the guidance from your Dad. Jim Pardew was a wonderful person who loved his family - prayers for Kathy and your families -

Zorica Maric

June 6, 2021

To Pardew Family:

I was very saddened to hear of Jim passing. Please accept my heartfelt condolences. Jim will always be remembered as a peacemaker who understood complexities in the troubled Balkans and who improved democracy immeasurably in all of its countries. Wishing you hope in the midst of sorrow, comfort in the midst of pain. May he rest in eternal peace.
Zorica Maric Djordjevic, Ambassador of Montenegro (Ret.), Washington DC

June Gulley

June 6, 2021

Kathy and family, I am so sorry for your lose. My prayers are with you and your family.

Zdravko Kamenarov

June 6, 2021

It was truly a pleasure to have gotten to know James Pardew. He was a great inspiration for my artworks.
In the last one year Jim gave me the idea for a totally new line of my art.
Thank you Jim! I will miss you dearly!

Roberta Hoffman

June 5, 2021

Jim was an admirable, effective & highly valued government servant, a loving husband totally committed to his wife, Kathy, and an exemplary father & grandfather.
As my brother-in-law, he was always welcoming, interesting, kind, and simply fun to be around. His smile(chuckle) always made me feel happy to be in his presence. I will miss him, but appreciate my time spent with him.
Roberta Hoffman