OBITUARY

CSM James Burton Clark

April 14, 1946October 9, 2020
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Bro. James Burton Clark (Jim) a long-time resident of Birmingham, Alabama passed away at his home on Friday, October 9, 2020, at the age of 74. He was born on April 14, 1946 in Whatley, Alabama to the late James Horne and the late Gertrude Reid. Jim was raised by his loving mother, Gertrude R. Clark and devoted stepfather, James Lee Clark of Mobile, Alabama. He was preceded in death by his mother, Gertrude R. Clark; stepfather, James Lee Clark; brother, Bobby Lee Clark; and sister, Leona Clark Sampson. Jim was baptized into Christ as a young man at Alabaster Church of Christ where he served as a faithful member, Bible Class teacher, song leader, and mentor to the young men there for 30 years before moving to and remaining a faithful member of North Shelby Church of Christ in Birmingham, Alabama until his health failed. Left to cherish and mourn his life and memories are his loving and devoted wife of 47 years, Clarece Harris Clark of Birmingham, AL; three sons, David (Lisa) Clark, Michael (Molly) Clark all of Virginia and James Damian Clark of Birmingham, AL; two daughters, Lonyetta Clark of St. Louis, MO, and Kenyetta (Lloyd) Spence of Plano, TX; seven loving and devoted grandchildren, Brittany (Maren) Tollefson of Guam, USA, Jordan A. Clark, April (Garrett) Espree, Sherry Reyes, Edward Reyes, all of Virginia, Azariah Spence and Hananiah Spence of Plano, TX; seven great-grandchildren; two great-great grandchildren; a very special and devoted niece/daughter, Kimbley (Kim) Leverett of Jacksonville, FL; three brothers, Jack (Sheila) Clark, Rob Clark, Ronald (Bonnie) Clark all of Mobile, AL; five sisters, Gertrude (Joseph) Laffiette, Carolyn Clark and Viola Armstrong from Mobile, AL, Janet Clark from Cleveland, OH, and Lillie C. Walker from Houston, TX.; three brothers-in-law, Johnnie Harris, Sr., Timothy Harris of Mobile, AL, and Sylvester (Carolyn) Harris, Jr. of Russell, MS; sister-in-law, Louise Harris Gamble and many, many nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends, including three very special long-time friends and brothers in Christ: James (Faye) Hall of Montevallo, AL, Henry (Martha) Haynes of Calera, AL; and Jim (Madilyn) Darden of Birmingham, AL; along with neighbors and fellow Guardsmen, friends, and family members. Jim joined the U.S. Marine Corps in 1963 at the age of 17 and served six years in the Marine Corps before joining the Alabama Army National Guard where he proudly served for 20 years. He obtained the rank of 20th Special Forces Group Command Sergeant Major (CSM) and the Post CSM at Fort McClellan Training Site in Anniston, AL until retiring in 2006. He worked for Bellsouth Communications (later becoming AT&T Telecommunications) for 30 years until his retirement in 2002. Jim earned an Associate of Science Degree in Business Administration from Mobile Business College in Mobile, AL in 1975. A visitation will be held at Ridout’s Southern Heritage Funeral Home in Pelham, AL on Wednesday, October 14, 2020 from 11:00 am to 12:00 pm with a funeral service beginning at 12:00 pm. He will be laid to rest with full military honors at Alabama National Cemetery in Montevallo at 2:00 pm

  • DONATIONS

  • 20th Special Forces Society Scholarship Fund

Services

  • Visitation

    Wednesday, October 14, 2020

  • Homegoing Celebration

    Wednesday, October 14, 2020

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CSM James Burton Clark

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Memories

CSM James Burton Clark

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KRISTIE COOK (FULLER)

October 23, 2020

Mrs. Clarece, I was so saddened to hear of the passing of Mr. Jim. He had the best smile and sweetest disposition. We think of you guys often, although it has been many years since we last saw each other. Please know that you and your family are in our prayers. Much love, Kristie (and Baylie and Chayse)

Charles Drummond

October 21, 2020

It was an honor to know such a great patriot as Mr. Clark. He was a strong man who loved his family. We will keep you all in our prayers during this time. Sincerely, Ann, Charles, Chloe, and Sean Drummond

Michelle busse

October 13, 2020

I was a part of the Clark family for four years many, many years ago and Jim was always so sweet to me. He was easy to talk to yet no non sense either. What I loved seeing was the love he showed his family and especially his Queen. He truly spoiled Clarice and she spoiled him. I am blessed to have known such a great man. He was still trying to crack jokes the last time I saw him. Love you all.

steve Adams

October 12, 2020

CSM Clark, a great individual, soldier and American. I am proud to have had the pleasure to have known and served with him. My heart felt condolences go out to his family and many friends.

Alecia Laffiette Johnson (niece)

October 12, 2020

This was a sweet memory. We were all at Mom and Granddaddy's house to celebrate their birthdays. I will miss my Uncle Jim. So glad that he had the opportunity to pour into my life. So glad that I was able to glean wisdom and love from him. ~Nikki

Kelli Walker

October 12, 2020

Russ Knowles

October 12, 2020

David, we are so sorry for the loss of your father, but this is Heaven's gain and death has no strength over your dad because Jesus conquered death! Our hope and prayer is that you will feel the love and comfort of others and our Lord and Savior Jesus the Christ as you navigate the current of grief. Russ and Ginger Knowles of the Prattville church of Christ, Prattville, AL.

Cathy Kelley

October 12, 2020

So very sorry for your loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with each of you. May God wrap his loving arms around you and comfort you.

Peter Collins

October 11, 2020

I remember you as an NCO and a person I tried to emulate and looked up to in my military career... Truly a great NCO and outstanding human being. You will be remembered and missed greatly..

Susan Pruitt

October 10, 2020

Jim and I worked across the aisle from each other for several years at what is now AT&T. He taught me so much about not only the work that we did but about how to be a better person. He was a private man. But I learned things about him in bits and pieces such as the day that I offered him one of my lifesaver candies and he turned it down. Who doesn’t like lifesavers! So I kidded him and asked him why he didn’t want one. In a low voice he told me that during one of his tours in Vietnam he and his men were out on maneuvers and something happened (he never told me what) and for 3 days all they subsisted on were packs of lifesavers. He swore that when he got back to safety that he’d never eat another one and he was still keeping that promise when we worked together. Wang Chung, Jim (he’d sing that often when he was in a fine mood), I’ll see you again someday!

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