Jim died April 20, 2021. 

He grew up in San Antonio and graduated from the Texas Military Institute as valedictorian. At Princeton he ran track, was choir manager, and was a member of Cloister Inn. 

After Pearl Harbor he joined the Army Air Corps, receiving pilot training from the British Royal Air Force. He flew C-47 transports in the air supply routes of the China-Burma-India Theater to bring supplies to the Chinese troops fighting the Japanese. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Air Medal with one Oak Leaf Cluster. 

He married Mary Anita Dittmar. One of only three pilots to wear the wings of the United States, Great Britain, and China, he was invited to the Oval Office by President George W. Bush. 

He spent his career at department stores in Greensboro, N.C.; Houston, Texas; and with Joske’s Department Stores in San Antonio, retiring as vice president. 

Jim was involved with the San Antonio Symphony, the Texas Cavaliers, marching in the inaugural parades of Dwight Eisenhower and George W. Bush, the Conopus Club, the Order of the Alamo, the San Antonio German Club, and the military Order of the Daedalians.

Jim was predeceased by his wife and his grandson Robert Higginbotham. He is survived by his six children, Carolyn Phipps ’76 *88 s*84, James Jr. ’78, Elizabeth Hickman ’80, Joseph, Richard, and Lucile Higginbotham; eight grandchildren; and one great-grandchild. 

Undergraduate Class of 1945