James C. Beeler, of Jacksonville, Florida, passed away on Sunday, September 10th, 2023, at the age of 74. Fondly known as Jay, he was born on August 24, 1949, in Knoxville, Tennessee, to James and Etta Mae(Weaver) Beeler.
After graduating from Rule High School in Knoxville, Jay embarked on a lifelong journey with his high school sweetheart, Sharron, whom he married immediately after graduation. He dedicated twenty-two years to a distinguished career in the United States Air Force, serving as a special agent in the Office of Special Investigations where he created lifelong friendships with generals and other foreign dignitaries. Together with his wife and three children, Jay’s service led them to various corners of the globe, including a transformative six-year period in Turkey, during which he became fluent in the Turkish language and developed a deep affection for the culture. In 1991, Jay retired from the Air Force and transitioned into a new role, excelling in fraud investigation in Jacksonville, FL. This civilian chapter of his life allowed him to establish roots and forge new friendships. Through Goldwing and Miata clubs, he found a wonderful community, and he devoted his spare time to volunteer work, notably as a dedicated docent at the Jacksonville Zoo for over a decade and as a committed volunteer at the ARC community center here in Jacksonville. Across borders and social circles, Jay-Bey was universally lauded for his embodiment of honor, integrity, and nobility.
In the wake of his passing, Jay is survived by his three children, Melissa Nan, James C. Beeler II, and Heather Waters, and his brother, Tandy Beeler. Additionally, he leaves behind five beloved grandchildren: Tiffany Trujillo, Marisa Holley, Sydney Peña, James C. Beeler III, and Hunter Waters. He took immense pride in welcoming five great-grandchildren before his passing.
Jay was preceded in death by his wife, Sharron, who passed just three months earlier in June 2023. He is also preceded by his parents, Etta Mae and James Beeler, as well as his brother, Ray Beeler.
A celebration of James’s life will take place at 10:00 am on Friday, September 22nd, at Jacksonville National Cemetery. Dr. Timothy McDaniel will officiate, and members of the Moody AFB Honor Guard will be in attendance to render military honors. For further information, please contact Evergreen Funeral Home at 3545 Main Street, Jacksonville, Florida 32206, or call (904) 353-3649. They are entrusted with the arrangements and care.