James Ramsay Stewart (Jan. 30, 1928–June 4, 2018) passed away peacefully on Monday from congestive heart failure. He will be greatly missed by his wife, Betty Jane Stewart, and his devoted children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Jim was born in East Orange, New Jersey, during his parents' first visit to America from Scotland, but he soon returned to his home country, spending his early childhood years just outside of Glasgow. Jim descended from a proud Scottish family with a father and uncles who were highly decorated Seaforth Highlanders during World War II.
By Jim’s early teens, he was back in Bloomfield, where he was an acclaimed athlete, eventually earning seven college scholarships and, later, six major league baseball contracts.
Jim met his wife, Elizabeth Jane Bennett, at the College of William and Mary. They married in 1953. Due to sports-induced injuries, Jim pursued a career in banking rather than baseball and went on to hold officer positions in Wilmington, Del., and White Plains, N.Y.
Following a change of career, Jim taught at several private academies in Stony Brook, Long Island and Wilmington, Del., where he coached sports and held head middle- and upper-school positions. Shortly after an exchange year teaching at a boys' college in Llandudno, North Wales, Jim retired to begin, with his wife, their own highly successful antique business.
Jim was an excellent businessman and teacher. He was a devout Christian and the patriarch of an ever-growing, large and close family. He was a loving husband for 65 years and a kind and attentive father to four children: Rebecca Elizabeth Stewart Chapman (Geoffrey) of Sewickley, Pa.; Deborah Jane Stewart Phillips (Charles) of Lookout Mountain, Ga.; James Bennett Stewart (Susan) of Charlotte, N.C.; and Robert Ramsay Stewart (Danielle) of Blowing Rock, N.C. Jim has 17 grandchildren and 28 great-grandchildren.
His favorite Bible verses were Proverbs 3:5-6.
A graveside service will be held for family and close friends on Saturday, June 9, at 2 p.m., in Forest Hills Cemetery, Chattanooga.
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