James Junior, Laddy bucks Mullins's Memorial

James Junior, Laddy bucks Mullins
(Unknown - 1997)

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General Details

Name: Mr James Junior, Laddy bucks Mullins
Nick Name: Jimbo
Gender: Male
Lived: Unknown - Friday, 1 August 1997

My Story



Stories


True Life Experiences

Jim Mullins and I met in 81 on the *USS Atlanta SSN 712. We became best of friends until his death. He was a joy to be around, a sense of humor beyond compare. I have many fond memories of Jim. He had the greatest laugh; we could make each other laugh till we cried. His death has taken something from me; I will never be the same.

Jim my friend and brother, I love you and miss you wherever you are...Sunday, September

27, 1998

Late 1981, I was assigned to the USS Atlanta SSN 712 Pre Commissioning unit. Ship was recently launched, so crew was assigned office space.

Shortly after arrival I was the Radio space nursing a hangover, a guy walked in, he was looking rather haggard himself, and he reminded me of Dick Van Dyke. He conversed with a fellow Radioman, speaking about night of carousing; he now had some regret due to monstrous hangover.

He introduced himself as Jim Mullins; we had an immediate bond of commonality; Drinking and hangovers.

Jim was about 29 at the time, but looked younger, I was late 23.

Our dramatically opposing backgrounds should have precluded any possible friendship, but this turned out to be an enhancement.

Jim- from New York, upper class

Me- from Louisiana, lower middle class


Jim thought that I lived in the swamps, in a shotgun shack, floorboards so wide you could see the chickens underneath, this was further enforced by his viewing the movie; “Southern Comfort”. Initially he would look at me with pity in his eyes and ask; “How can you live like that?” I explained that we had interstate highways and that I lived on dry land, not a swamp. His reaction was one of empathetic doubt.

Jim was having a 67-thunder bird restored by one of the Chiefs from the ship, so for time being Jim was without transport. I soon became Jim’s best friend with collateral chauffeuring duties. I was taking Jim all over; stores, restaurants and to see progress of his car.

Having a drinking habit to support, this left me with very little “fundage”, so purchasing gasoline was a luxury. I’d ask Jim to chip in cause I only had 2 dollars to contribute to gas tank. Jim said, I will pay you back when my car is finished, so don’t sweat the small stuff.


Jim pays his debts...

Eternity passes, Jim’s car is now finished with restoration, and my van is just finished. We met after work one day, he picked me up, final destination-ChiChi’s.

Upon completion of eats and consumption of 7 margaritas each, we departed into the rainy night. While Jim drove, I smoked, moments later I committed a horrendous offense that almost tore apart our friendship; I flicked an ash outside the window.

Jim, realizing what I had just done, brought the car to a screeching halt. Thus began a 30-minute dissertation titled; “Flicking ashes during rain and its ramifications”.

He explained that with the combination of the wind and rain, my ash was now sticking to the side of the car. He forced us out of the car to review same. After a thorough search, offending ash was found.

With hands waving, spittle flying, he began explaining in rapid-fire detail the process he would now have to undertake to removed ash. When lecture was complete, we did a quick overview, ending with a surprise quiz on the subject. Jim, spent, began driving me home. Pulling into the parking lot he informed me we were now even in the ways of transport. How can one ride from you in anyway make us even for the six months I tooled you around the state of Virginia? His rationalization was; I drove him around in an old raggedy van, while today I was given the unique opportunity to sport around in a restored classic. How does one argue this logic? Easier to accept and move on.

Jim was the most fastidious person I had every met, for instance, if you were a visitor at his domicile, use of both sides of an ashtray was prohibited, this violation could result in banishment from property.

Our friendship continued once I left the ship and on to when we were both out of the Navy. We spoke and I visited often. There are many more events that happened along the way; I will include at a later date.


Forward to 1997

After discussions with Jim, Gloria and I made plans to visit him over Christmas Holiday.

August 1997

Received a call from Steven (Jim’s brother-in-law) that Jim was

dead and had been buried in June. They had just located a valid

phone number for me in Jim’s belongings

I then spoke with Pam, Jim’s former fiancee

That following Monday evening after Jim’s less than pleasant visit, she received a call from Jim’s boss.

Boss informed Pam that Jim neither called nor showed up for work.

Pam tried calling, but only answering machine answered. She then drove to his house, once there, she opened the garage door. The family room could be accessed via a door at the rear of garage; she opened the door and walked in.

She looked around at all the mementos that were strangely on display. The vacuum was still running, she walked over to other side of room to turn off the machine. This is where she found Jim, dead, gunshot wound to the head.

Hate using a cliché word, but there has been no “Closure” for me in regards to Jim’s death. Missing the funeral may be a contributory factor. I miss him terribly and feel some personal guilt, should have called more and spoke of personal accomplishments less. Had hope to continue life long friendship, we have so much history together. Even today, I will think of a humorous incident and wish to inform Jim, reality prevents this.

Mark



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Biography

Occupation: Engineering
Marital Status: Divorced

Interests

Favourite Sport: Hockey

Passing

Date of Passing: 1 August 1997

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