James Elsworth Shields, known to friends and family alike as “Jimmy” all his life, passed away suddenly Sunday evening, February 19th at his home in Vero Beach, Florida.
Jimmy was born in Troy, Ohio on April 4th, 1956, at Stouder Memorial Hospital to Doctor and Mrs. Louise Shields. He was the third of their four children, survived by his elder brother Jay Shields of Troy, Ohio, and his sisters, Julie Shields of Troy, Ohio and Jill Johnston of Cincinnati, Ohio.
Jim and his brother and sisters were raised in Troy and Jim attended Troy High School, graduating as part of the Class of 74. He was an athlete, as part of the early Trojan gymnastics teams. He was a popular and beloved classmate, forming friendships there that lasted his entire life.
He met Becky Carson, then a student in Vandalia, Ohio and fell in love with her, marrying her soon afterwards. They were together through all that life brought their way, for some 47 years.
Jim worked for years in cable television, first in one of the nation’s pioneering cable operations, Troy Cable, then followed both-Becky and the growing cable industry-to Clearwater Florida and Fairfax Virginia, acting as sales manager as well as installation supervisor. Jim was good at everything he put his mind to, quick to learn and sure to do his utmost to succeed.
The couple settled in Vero Beach, Florida eventually, making it their happy home for many years. He and Becky raised their two sons, Joel and Patrick there, while Jim founded and grew his landscaping and lawn care management company. He loved being outdoors and was a friend to many of his customers, trusted and cherished. Jim was a tireless worker and an enthusiastic, energetic man. He was outgoing, with a constant smile and good word for everyone. Jim believed in giving back to his community and helping others in big and small ways. Jim was dedicated to his family and was pleased that their family was about to include his first Grandson. His eldest son Joel and his wife are expecting to welcome a son, Dallas Shields into the family any day now. No one who knew Jim will forget him, and those of us who were lucky enough to love him will miss him sorely. He was a special man: a true friend, loving husband, thoughtful and loving father and son, a true brother. Jimmy lit up every room he entered, always looked for and found the good in others, offered his hand openly to strangers, and could always be counted on to do the next right thing. He was a handsome, easygoing man who possessed a warm and natural charm. He was unfailingly upbeat, impressive and memorable in his commitment to life, love and the happiness of loved ones. We will cherish Jim and keep his memory with us always.
A celebration of life will be announced by his family at a future date.
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