Master Sergeant Retired, James A. “Jim” Bishop, of Bear, DE, passed away peacefully at home, surrounded by family, on November 26, 2021 at the age of 83 after a long battle with Parkinson’s disease.
Jim was born in Laurel, Mississippi in 1938. He was a 1956 graduate of Purvis High School in Purvis, MS. Following graduation, he joined the United States Air Force in 1957 and received multiple medals and commendations throughout his service, including the USAF commendation Medal for Meritorious Service as Avionics Chief, 834th Avionics Maintenance Squadron, Eglin Air Force Base in Florida. Jim was very proud to have served his Country in Vietnam from 1970 to 1971. He regularly wore his Vietnam Veteran caps and would always thank his fellow brothers-in-arms for their service.
Jim retired from the USAF in 1978, as Master Sergeant then transitioned to Boeing in Philadelphia, PA where he carried on his love of aircraft. His focus there was working on the groundbreaking launch of the V-22, Osprey Helicopter. He retired from Boeing in 1998.
After retirement, Jim volunteered for the Crisis Center in Newark, DE and Meals on Wheels. He was a devout Southern Baptist and a quiet, spiritual man. He faithfully attended Sunday services every week.
Jim was very generous with his family, contributions to the church and to many charitable organizations including the Special Olympics, Disabled American Veterans and classes for the vision impaired. He also supported all his children’s activities.
Jim loved being with his family. He enjoyed fishing, camping and was even the Director of the Good Sam RV Club of DE from 1999 to 2003. His favorite pastimes were reading/listening to books, mainly by his favorite author Louis L'Amour. He also enjoyed listening to music, especially Old Time Gospel and Bluegrass music. He rarely missed a chance to listen to his favorite program every Saturday morning on WBUD. Jim was an avid NASCAR fan. He started out following Mark Martin and recently became a big fan of Chase Elliot.
Jim enjoyed wintering at their home in Tampa, Florida attending their church at the First Baptist of Port Tampa and going on multiple cruises with his wife to the Caribbean. He also liked dining out at his favorite steak house and attending Gospel concerts.
Jim is survived by his beloved wife Beverly, his loving children Donna Bishop-Forman (Scott Forman), Tammy Cannatelli (Mike Cannatelli) and Phillip Bishop (Rachel Pittman-Bishop), his devoted grandchildren Nathaniel Webb, Sr. (Nichole Susane), Natalie Brown (Todd Brown), Jim Cannatelli, Caleb Bishop and Isaac Bishop, great grandchildren Frederick Webb, Nathaniel Webb, Jr., Dakota Webb, Magnolia Brown and Billy Brown. Jim is also survived by his loving siblings, Joyce Owens, Bettye Purvis and Larry Bishop along with many nieces, nephews, cousins and extended family members through the marriages of his children.
Jim was predeceased by his parents, Jesse and Edna Bishop (Saucier), siblings, Warren Bishop and Sarah Owens and by his loving grandson, Nicholas James Webb.
Relatives and friends are invited to visit with the family as they celebrate Jim’s life and pay their respects to a wonderful man. Visitation will be held on Monday December 13, 2021 from 6:00 to 8:00 pm at Beeson Funeral Home, 2053 Pulaski Highway, Newark. Services will be held on Tuesday December 14, 2021 from 9:00 am to 10:00 am with a committal service following in Delaware Veterans Memorial Cemetery. The eulogy and service will be officiated by Bobby Patton of First Baptist, Port Tampa, Florida.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests contributions to Seasons Hospice, 220 Continental Drive, Suite 407, Newark DE 19713 (seasonsfoundation.org/donate) or The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research (michaeljfox.org/donate).