Halifax County, Virginia
Woodbourne - Home of James Easley Edmunds, III
Woodbourne April 13, 2003
Born and raised in Halifax County, "Jimmy" Edmunds attended public schools, then Virginia Episcopal School and later the University of Virginia, where he graduated from the College of Arts and Sciences in 1938 and the University Law School in 1942. He was captain of the University basketball team and a three-letter man on the baseball team. He was president of O.D.K., a national leadership society.
Mr. Edmunds was a founding member of Halifax Regional Hospital, where he was a trustee for 50 years. As a board member and past president of the hospital, he was instrumental in the recruitment of doctors, the expansion of the hospital and its overall growth.
"Mr. Edmunds took great pride in our hospital and he was a great ambassador," said Chris A. Lumsden, the hospital's chief executive. "He provided a vision for the future . . .He helped bring new doctors and new specialties to this area."
He served as a member of the Halifax County Board of Supervisors from 1967 to 1983. During his tenure, major public facilities - the senior high school and vocational center, the Halifax County Farm Center and library, and the Halifax County - South Boston Industrial Park - were constructed.
In 1983, the board appointed Mr. Edmunds to lead the county's opposition to a proposal to mine uranium in nearby Pittsylvania County. His efforts helped to create the Halifax chapter of Southside Concerned Citizens organization, which defeated the project. An avid sportsman and an advocate for protection of natural resources, he was a founding member of the Halifax Sportsman's Club.
Mr. Edmunds was the recipient of many honors and awards, including the Halifax County Distinguished Citizen's Award, the Sertoma Club's Service to Mankind Award, and the Wildlife Conservation Award. He was inducted into the Halifax County-South Boston Sports Hall of Fame in 1985.
"My father wanted to make a difference by staying put in his hometown," said daughter, Emma C. Edmunds, of Charlottesville.
Whether hunting for quail with his friends and family or competing on the tennis courts, Mr. Edmunds was a man of tremendous energy, said longtime friend, Bill Greer.
"Despite his age, he was still going and doing and still interested in what was going on in the legal profession and in the community. He was a leader in so many things and I admired him so much. He never wanted to quit anything."
Greer had to persuade him to step down from the board of the Halifax-South Boston Sports Hall of Fame so that Mr. Edmunds, a former U. Va. basketball and baseball player, could be nominated for membership. He was inducted in 1995.
March 20, 2003
In Thanksgiving For the Life of
James Easley Edmunds, III
October 21, 1915 - March 17, 2003
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