James Louis Glenn 

May 8, 1920 – May 12, 2012

James Louis Glenn passed away in his home on Saturday, May 12, 2012, just four days after his 92nd birthday. A memorial service was held at 6 p.m. Monday, May 14, at the First Baptist Church of Leander. On Wednesday, May 16, at 1 p.m. a graveside service with Naval Honor Guard will be conducted at the City Cemetery in Bryan, where James will be buried next to his brother, daughter, and son.

James was born the youngest of four boys on May 8, 1920, in Waxahachie, Texas, to Lucille Aldridge and William Leslie Glenn. Mr. Glenn bore the burden of rearing the boys when their mother became ill, and eventually, James was sent to the Corsicana Orphan’s Home, where he lived from the age of 6 to the age of 12. At that time he was reunited with his father and went to live with him on the Rister family farm in Roby, Texas, where his father worked as a farm hand. James spent the next decade as a Rister family “add-on.”

Along with many of the Rister clan, James joined the Navy on January 26, 1942. He served in World War II as Signalman Second Class, received a Purple Heart medal, and was honorably discharged on December 7, 1945. After the war, he returned to the Rister family farm and proposed to the oldest daughter, Dorinne. They married Christmas Eve, 1945, just months after the end of the war.

James and Dorinne both attended the University of Texas, living in a small Streamline trailer at the Pecan Grove Trailer Park on Barton Springs Road, a landmark that exists to this day. On January 31, 1949, James graduated with two bachelor’s degrees: Psychology and Sociology. Before Dorinne graduated with her two degrees (Chemistry and Home Economics), they had to live apart for a time. It seems that one of the requirements of a Home Economics degree was to live in the Home Ec house for an entire semester. James had to “come calling” on his wife to see her!

After some short-term stays elsewhere, the two settled in Bryan, Texas in 1953, where they lived 48 years in the same house on Highland Drive. Still childless, they sought to adopt and were blessed with an infant son, Kenneth, just a few hours old. After two years, they got word that a sibling group of three girls was available, Violet, Betty, and Carolyn, so they jumped at the chance to fill out their family. Unknown to them, Dorinne was pregnant with Donna when they went to pick up the girls. They had five kids, within two years, spaced seven years apart!

In Bryan, James and Dorinne were active, first, at Calvary Baptist Church until sometime in the 1960s, followed by 15 or 20 years at Emmanuel Baptist Church, and finally, for about 20 years at Central Baptist Church.

James made his livelihood as an insurance and real estate broker, but he enjoyed investing himself in several ministries. He was active in Lay Witness Missions in the 1970s, and for many years he had what he used to call the “Shipley ministry”; he filled the back of his car with collected Shipley Donut day-old pastries and delivered them to various organizations every week, such as the Boys and Girls Clubs and area nursing homes. He led a weekly Sunday School class at Sherwood Nursing Home and was also actively involved in Prison Fellowship, going to various Texas prisons to speak about the life transformation that could be found in Jesus Christ. He donated almost 21 gallons of blood, up until he was 81 years old, obtaining permission to go beyond the age barrier on numerous occasions, only stopping because he had knee replacement surgery in 2001, after which blood donation was prohibited by his doctor. 

James and Dorinne moved to Leander in 2001 to live in the guesthouse behind the home of their youngest daughter and her family. They made First Baptist Church of Leander their church home, where Dorinne still goes.

James was convinced and awed that God loved him, and now he’s at home with Him, seeing Him face to face.

He is preceded in death by two of his five children, Vi Jackson and Ken Glenn.

He is survived by his wife, Dorinne Rister Glenn; three children, Betty Chadwick, Carolyn Gandy, and Donna Ledbetter; ten grandchildren, Meredith and Jeremy Shaevitz, Jay Cothran, Chris Glenn, Heather Callender, Micah Ledbetter, Hannah Lindsley, and Leah, Josiah, and Noah Ledbetter; and four great-grandchildren, Jolene and Shelby Glenn, Hunter Callender, and Eli Lindsley.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Still Creek Ranch Children’s Home, a ministry James and Dorinne have loved and actively supported for more than thirty years (6055 Hearne Road, Bryan, TX 77808 / 979-589-3206 / www.stillcreekranch.org).

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