“Coach” James Gardner Garrison, Sr., age 82, of Murfreesboro, passed away on April 3, 2015 at the Vidant Roanoke Chowan Hospital of Ahoskie, NC.
He was born on March 5, 1933 to Robert and Irene Garrison in Weaverville, NC. Coach Garrison was raised in the Mill’s Home Baptist Orphanage in Thomasville, NC, which is now North Carolina Baptist Children’s Home. He attended Gardner-Webb University, Western Carolina University, later coming to Chowan University to coach football, where he made his home for his family and began his life legacy. Coach Garrison dedicated more than fifty years to Chowan University and its Athletic Department. He developed the annual Jim Garrison Golf Tournament to raise money for the athletic department of Chowan University. He started the Murfreesboro Recreational Program, and coached little league for many years. Continuing on with supporting the community, Coach Garrison served on the Board of Education for Hertford County, Murfreesboro Rescue Squad, was a member of the Murfreesboro Exchange Club and the local Masonic Lodge. Over his lifetime of accomplishments, he has been inducted into five Sports Hall of Fames, which includes the National Junior College Athletic Association Sports Hall of Fame, the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame, the Gardner-Webb Sports Hall of Fame, the Western Carolina University Sports Hall of Fame, and Chowan University Sports Hall of Fame, which now dons his name as the Chowan University “Jim Garrison” Sports Hall of Fame. Coach Garrison was dedicated to his family, players and Chowan University. He loved all of his former players and took great pride in all their accomplishments.
Along with his parents he was preceded in death by his son, James “Jimmy” Gardner Garrison, Jr., two sisters and two brothers.
Left to cherish his memory is his loving wife Joyce, two daughters, Lisa Garrison Lane and husband Jimmy of Murfreesboro, NC, Joy Garrison Luke and husband Tim of Ahoskie, NC; son, Darrell Bruce Garrison of Wilmington, NC; six grandsons, Jamie Lane and wife Jennifer of Suffolk, VA, Josh Lane of Murfreesboro, NC, Jake and Justin Krieger of Palm City, FL, Peyton and Maddox Garrison of Wilmington, NC; four granddaughters, Jenny Lane Ownbey and husband Andrew of Merry Hill, NC, Kristen Amaker and husband Wayne of Goose Creek, SC, Ebony Lucas of Olympia, WA, Bonnie Garrison of Olympia, WA; six great-grandchildren, Savannah and Caylee Ownbey, Chandler, Gage, Levi and Sadie Amaker, along with several nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be held on Sunday, April 12, 2015, from 12:30 pm until 2:30 pm at Chowan University Pond Football Center. A Celebration of Life service will follow at 3:00 pm at Garrison Stadium-Chowan University. Following the celebration of life service, the family requests friends return back to the Pond Center for refreshments and fellowship. The family will have a private scattering of remains at Garrison Stadium at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Jim Garrison Scholarship Fund or The Chowan University Athletic Department, One University Place, Murfreesboro, NC 27855, in Coach Garrison’s honor.
Garrett-Sykes Funeral Service – Memorial Chapel, Murfreesboro, NC is handling the arrangements for the Garrison family and online condolences can be directed to the family by visiting www.garrettsykesfs.com.