Monday, May 29, 2023

James Lewis McClain

James Lewis McClain, age 90, of rural Karnak (Massac County), passed away at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 21, 2022 at the Metropolis Nursing and Rehabilitation Center.

James was born November 30, 1931 on a farm outside of Boaz, Illinois.

James was a graduate of the Karnak Community High School. He was a member of the First United Methodist Church in Karnak. He enjoyed woodworking and raising his horses. He had taught at the Joppa Grade School and was also a basketball coach He was a self employed carpenter. In earlier years James had also worked at the Smithland Lock and Dam. He was a licensed gun dealer for over 50 years. James also was a member of the Anderson Cemetery Association in Massac County.

James was very active in the Masonic Lodge and took great pride in it.

On March 4, 1975 James was elected to receive degrees from the Grand Chain Masonic Lodge #660 AF & AM. He was initiated March 4, 1975 then passed to Fellowcraft on April 15, 1975 and raised to Master Mason on April 29, 1975. James served as Master of his lodge in 1978. In 1980 he began as secretary which lasted ten years. Wanting to advance further in Masonry he passed the exam for Certified Lodge Instructor in 1990. He was bestowed the title of Grand Lodge Instructor. Other honors that were bestowed were the Assistant District Grand Master in 1992, District Lodge Instructor #195 and #205. He was honored by the 19th Southern District for special contributions. He was a honorary member of all lodges in the 19th Southern District as well as many many other lodges for several years. He assisted in teaching and preparing others to pass the exams for advancement. He was most recently a member of the Bay City Lodge #771.

James was preceded in death by his wife, Melba Jean Chandler in 1985; father, Jack McClain, mother, Essie Barnett Lockett.

James is survived by many cousins and friends.

Funeral services honoring the life of Mr. James Lewis McClain will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, June 24, 2022 at Wilson Funeral Home in Karnak. Rev. Wiley Godfrey will officiate. Visitation will be from 9 a.m. until the service hour Friday morning. Masonic Rites will be accorded at 10 a.m. Interment will follow at the Anderson Cemetery near Boaz in rural Massac County.

Pallbearers will be Rusty Blanchard, Corey Willenborg, David Miller, Philip Barnett, William Wells, Bill Wilke, Mason Bremer and Dan Bremer.

Honorary pallbearer will be Deon Peck.

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