Dr. James Coleman

Obituary of Dr. James Edward Coleman

Dr. James Edward Coleman, 95, of Fairmont, passed away peacefully on Friday, February 16, 2024, at his residence. He was born on October 6, 1928 in Newport, Arkansas, a son of the late George Edward Coleman and Ruby Sites Coleman, both of El Dorado, Arkansas. He is survived by his loving wife of 230 months, Elizabeth Swiger. Jim is also survived by his sons Benjamin “Ben” Edward Coleman (Marietta, GA), George “Bill” William Coleman (spouse, Theresa, Loganville, GA) and Robert “Doc” Clarkson Coleman (spouse Shawn, Germantown, MD), grandchildren Katherine Elizabeth Coleman (Carrollton, GA), Lauren Ruth Coleman (Loganville, GA), and nieces Cathy Pietsch, Cindy Bergman, Caryn Crull, and Carol Ann Tisdale. He was also much beloved by his second wife Elizabeth Swiger, step-daughter Susan Case (husband, LeRoy), step grandchildren Lincoln (wife, Leah), as well as his step great granddaughters Dahlia and Mercy. Jim graduated from Louisiana State University with a Bachelors and Masters in Chemistry, and a PhD in Chemistry from Ohio State University. He married Ada Joyce Hatfield on June 12, 1954, in Atlanta, Georgia, at Grace Methodist Church. He began working at Esso Oil shortly after he and Joyce moved to Edison, NJ. In 1968 Jim, Joyce and their boys, Ben, Bill, and Robert Coleman moved to Fairmont, WV, and Jim began to teach at (then) Fairmont State College where he enjoyed a long career. In 1970, Jim was awarded grants from the National Science Foundation. In 1972 and 1973, Jim participated in research at the University of Florida. Jim was a man of deep faith. He was an active member of churches his entire life and was a dedicated United Methodist, awarded United Methodist Man of the Year in the West Virgina Conference. He also was a long-time member of the Fairmont Lion’s Club and was president of the Morning Gardeners Club after Joyce’s death, as well as a member of LIFE United Methodist Church, Marion County Historical Society, and Prickett’s Fort Foundation. On Dec 11, 2004, he married Elizabeth Swiger and encounted the second deep love of his life. Jim and Elizabeth traveled extensively and enjoyed their 20 years together. Jim stayed in touch with members of his High School graduating class (named “The North Bradford Street Boys”) including Sam Pascal, Frank McKenney, William “Willy” Matthews, Robert Ragsdale, and Thomas Carmichael for many, many years, having a rendezvous every year while they could at different places around the country. In addition to his parents, Jim was preceded in death by his first wife Ada Joyce Hatfield and brother William Louis Coleman. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in Jim’s memory to the LIFE United Methodist Church, 3000 Technology Drive, Fairmont, WV 26554, or a charity of your choice. The family has entrusted the arrangements to the Ford Funeral Home, R.C. Jones Chapel, 1410 Country Club Road, Fairmont. Friends will be received on Sunday, February 18, 2024, from 1 pm until 3 pm and again on Monday, February 19, 2024, from 11 am until 1 pm. The funeral service will be held in the funeral home on Monday at 1 pm with Pastor Mike Estep officiating. Interment will follow at the Rest Haven Memorial Gardens in Fairmont. Online condolences may be extended to the family at www.fordfuneralhomes.com.