Jimmy Brackett Cantrell, 81, of Smyrna, Tennessee passed away on Wednesday, August 26, 2020.
Jimmy, also called Jim, was born at Rock Island, Tennessee on February 23, 1939 to Jennings Bryan Cantrell and Lyda Jones Cantrell. As a child, he lived in McMinnville, Tennessee and at 15, his family moved to New Mexico where he developed his lifelong love of green chile. Jim was a U.S. Marine and an electrical engineering graduate of New Mexico State University.
Jim was part of early laser research at Hughes Aircraft and founder/president of Belco Industries in Carrizozo, New Mexico, manufacturer of Belco Arc Welders. In 1984, he was presented the “E” Award for Exports by President Ronald Reagan. Jim loved to travel and especially enjoyed the trips he took with his wife Virginia, traveling to Alaska, Africa, and many places in the US.
Jim loved his family and is survived by his wife, Virginia; daughters, Elaina (Clint) Robinson and Lisa (Jody) Phillips, sons, Bryan Cantrell, Billy Cantrell and Tony Cantrell; step-children, Teresa Massa-Thompson and Tony (Dawn) Massa. Jim took great joy in his many grandchildren: Jason Hill, Alexa (Jeremy) Leech, Kaitlyn Cantrell, Samantha Jarpe, Jansen Cantrell, David Hill, Jameson Cantrell, Jason Cantrell, Marc Cantrell, Morgan Cantrell, Rafael Cantrell, Carolyn Cantrell, Nikki (Jeff) Fletcher, Anthony Thompson; and great-grandson, Ryan Leech. Jim leaves behind many other family and friends including his sisters-in-law, Mary Cantrell and Marjorie Burling and dear friend, Johnny Shelton.
Jim is preceded in death by his wife of 40 years, Carolyn Scott Cantrell. In addition to his parents, sister Barbara (Wayne) Wall; brothers Richard (Mary) Cantrell and Bobby Larry; and grandson, Ryan Hill.
Memorial donations can be made to the Alzheimer’s Association or preferred memory care charity.
Visitation will be held August 28th 6 to 8 pm at the Woodbury Funeral Home. Family and friends are invited to visitation starting at 10:30 am with the Celebration of Life at 12 pm, on Saturday, August 29th, at Highland Heights Church of Christ, in Smryna, Tennessee. Graveside services will be at Centertown Cemetery at 3:30 pm.
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