James Harold Bethay, 91, passed away Tuesday, September 14, 2021. He was born January 10, 1930, in Tupelo, MS, to Longino L. Bethay and Mamie Clifford Pettigrew Bethay. He graduated from Tupelo High School in 1948, attended Soule' Business College and in December of 1950, he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force. In 1973, James was elected Chairman of the Board and President of Prentiss Manufacturing Company until his retirement in 1998. He served on the Deposit Guaranty Bank Board. He was member of the Rotary Club where he was a Paul Harris Fellow, Tiger Den Coffee Club Member, and a Member of First United Methodist Church in Booneville where he attended the Upper Room Sunday School Class. Mr. Bethay was an avid Ole Miss Rebel fan. He enjoyed spending time at Pickwick with his family and friends. James was awarded the Silver Beaver from the Boy Scouts of America in 1975. James earned The Scouting Heritage Society in a Lifetime Membership in 1996. Mr. Bethay was a Council Executive Board Honorary Life Member of the Yocona Area Boy Scouts of America. Funeral Services will be Friday, September 17, 2021, at 1:00 PM at First United Methodist Church in Booneville, MS. Visitation for Mr. Bethay will be Friday from 10:00 AM until service time at the church. Bro. Tim Sisk and Bro. Bobby Hankins will be officiating. Burial will be in Lee Memorial Park in Verona, MS. Booneville Funeral Home will be in charge of arrangements. He is survived by two sons, Larry Bethay (Sandi) and Lee Bethay (Lydia) all of Booneville; sisters, Wanda Flick of Lexington, KY, Nancy Gearheart of Coldsprings, KY, and Judy Rogers of Rogers, AR; three grandsons, Kyle Bethay, Ryan Bethay and Alex Bethay; one great-grandson, Cadle Bethay; and one great-granddaughter, Elliot Bethay. He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Sue; brother, Ronnie L. Bethay; and sister, Betty Mae Bethay. Pallbearers will be Mark Mackey, Blake Myers, Kyle Bethay, Ryan Bethay, and Alex Bethay. Honorary pallbearers will be the members of Tiger Den Coffee Club. In lieu of flowers and gifts, donations may be made to First United Methodist Church, 400 West Church Street, Booneville, MS 38829. Condolences may be extended to the family at boonevillefuneralhome.net.
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