Beloved husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather, James Francis Skeeler passed away at his home on Tuesday evening, May 13, 2008.

Visitation will be on Friday, May 16, beginning at 5:00 p.m. at Claybar Funeral Home in Orange.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Saturday, May 17, at 10:00 a.m., at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Orange.

He was born on January 19, 1931 in Waco, TX; and was the adopted and only child of William and Lucy (Reiss) Skeeler.

James attended St. Mary’s School and graduated from Stark High School in 1949. He attended Stephen F. Austin College for two years and played in their football team. On August 30, 1951, James married the former Marilyn Ann Housman at St. Mary’s Church rectory. One year later he joined the Air Force during the Korean Conflict. After completing his four-year tour he returned to Orange to begin his 47 year career with DuPont.

James will be remembered for his enthusiasm for family, sports, St. Mary’s Church and school and his love for animals.

He tried to make every sports event for his children and grandchildren, sat in the same pew at mass, and loved to joke with friends.

In addition to his wife, Marilyn, James is survived by their four children, Stephanie and husband Mark Friesenhahn, Nancy and husband Greg Pickard, Jane and husband Steve Maddox, James William and wife Mandy; 11 grandchildren, Koehl Friesenhahn, Chris Pickard and Nitia Smith, Stephen, Rob, and Leslie Maddox, and Drew, Tyler, Brittany, Abi, and Carson Skeeler; and nine great-grandchildren, Bryden, Grey, Natalee, and Noelle Smith, Kyle Pickard, Hallie and Koen Maddox and Mackenzie and Ethan Skeeler.

Pallbearers will be his grandsons and honorary pallbearers will be his great-grandsons.

The family is most grateful for the care that James received from hospice enabling him to remain at home.

Those wishing to remember James with a memorial, please make gifts to Southeast Texas Hospice or St. Mary’s School Foundation.