James Louis Hall, Jr., 66 years of age, a resident of Morgantown, West Virginia, passed away peacefully at his home on September 4, 2017. He was born in Welch, McDowell County, West Virginia.
He had a keen interest in politics which began when he was around 9 years old and met then Senator John F. Kennedy who was campaigning for President in 1960 in McDowell County. He maintained that interest throughout his life and enjoyed conversing about government and politics. He graduated from Northfork High School as an honor student in 1969 and in that year enrolled at Bluefield State College in Bluefield, West Virginia. He served as President of the Student Government Association in his senior year at Bluefield State. It was there that he also became a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity. He graduated from Bluefield State in 1973.
He continued his education in 1975 and earned his Master's Degree in 1977 from West Virginia University in Morgantown where he was a Graduate Assistant in the Political Science Department and instructed a political science class. During that time, he began employment at Region VI Planning and Development Council in Fairmont, West Virginia. He later founded Circle Maintenance, a buildings maintenance company based in Morgantown and worked in the company. In 1989 the United States Small Business Administration named him West Virginia Minority Business Person of the Year. He was named the Executive Director of the Region VI Planning and Development Council in the year 2000, and of the 73 regional districts of the 13 states of the Appalachian Regional Commission, he was the first and only African American to ever serve as a Regional Director. He was retired from Region VI.
He had been a faithful member of Greater St. Paul AME Church in Morgantown since 1974. He was active in numerous church activities and had served as Sunday School Superintendent, a member of the Steward Board, Chairman of the Trustee Board and Chairman of the Black History and Church Anniversary Programs. He was also actively involved in St. Paul's church program which serves meals to the homeless once each month in Morgantown. On May 20, 2017, he was honored as an "Unsung Hero" by the Pittsburgh-West Virginia Conference Lay Organization of the AME Church at its awards banquet.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Olga Moon Hall and James Louis Hall and one sister, Frances Hall Graves. His very loving, kind-hearted spirit and sense of humor will be greatly missed by those left to cherish his memory. He is survived by his sisters, Sarah N. Hall of Maybeury, West Virginia; Olga Hall Hurt and husband Preston Hurt of Bluefield, West Virginia; brother Henry Hall and wife Selina Hall of Charlotte, North Carolina; niece Taylor Hall; nephews Dr. Scott L. Graves and Elijah Hall; grandniece, Cheyenne Graves and grandnephews Scott L. Graves, Ill, Sean Graves and Christopher Graves. He is also survived by his step children, Deizune Mosby Walls and husband Agu Walls and Billy Mosby and step granddaughter Malia Mosby; cousins with whom he was very close; other relatives and many friends and associates.
Funeral services will be conducted at the Fred L. Jenkins Funeral Home, 10 South High Street, Morgantown, West Virginia 26501 on Monday, September 11, 2017 with visitation at 12:00 Noon to be followed by the funeral service at 1:00 o'clock p.m. Graveside services will be held at the Restlawn Memorial Gardens on Rt. 20, Littlesburg Road, Bluewell, West Virginia at 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday September 12, 2017.
Online condolences may be offered at www.fredjenkinsfuneralhome.com
Published on September 9, 2017