James Lebron Pugh was called home to be with his heavenly Father on Friday, December 4, 2020. Jim was born near Union Springs, Alabama on August 23, 1930 to Ivan Keith and Vessie Mae Pugh.
He graduated from Union Springs High School and attended Troy State Teacher's College before joining the Air Force in September 1950. He served at Carswell AFB in Fort Worth, Texas, assigned to the 436 Bomb Wing with the B-36 aircraft as crew chief and the 49 Bomber wing at Roswell, New Mexico.
During his service he met Betty Jane Horton, a student nurse, in Abilene, Texas. They were married December 3, 1954 in her hometown at First Baptist Church of Loraine, Texas.
Graduating in 1959 from the University of Alabama with a degree in mechanical engineering, Jim began his career at Pratt Whitney in West Palm Beach and transferred to work with NASA at the Kennedy Space Center in 1964. Later he was reassigned to the NASA test conductor office for the first shuttle launch.
During those years he and his family lived on Merritt Island and were active members of First Baptist Church of Merritt Island.
He retired from NASA on August 23, 1985, which gave him the opportunity to form Hearthstone Enterprise, a construction company where he was the General Contractor. Jim and Betty lived in Mims, Florida until 2012. They have been active members of First Baptist Church of Aurantia and moved to Crescent Wood Independent Living in 2018.
Jim Pugh is survived by his wife of 66 years, Betty Horton Pugh of Titusville, FL; 3 married children: Bill and Debby Pugh Jones of Columbia, SC, Richard and Diane Pugh Welch of Mims, Florida and David and Lori Stinson Pugh of Titusville, Florida; 19 grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; his brother and sister-in-law, Mr. and Mrs. Ivan Keith Pugh, Jr. of Union Springs, Alabama.
He was dearly loved and will be greatly missed. His was a life well lived (Psalm 112:1-6) and will be celebrated at First Baptist Church of Aurantia on Thursday, December 17, 2020 at 3:00 p.m. A private military burial will be at a later date .
In lieu of flowers donations may be given to Crossover Global in honor of Jim Pugh, who faithfully served on the Crossover Global Board of Directors or Hospice of St. Francis. Crossover Global's contact information is 803-691-0688, www.crossover.global, 7520 Monticello Road, Columbia, SC 29203 and Hospice of St. Francis' contact information is 321-269-4240, 1250-B Grumman Place, Titusville, Florida 32780.