James Elliott Payton Sr.

Published 12:01 am Sunday, June 14, 2015

James Elliott

Payton Sr.

BATON ROUGE — Services for James Elliott Payton Sr., 78, of Baton Rouge, who died Thursday, June 11, 2015, in Baton Rouge, will be at noon on Monday at St. Jude the Apostle Catholic Church.

Email newsletter signup

Burial will follow at Greenoaks Memorial park under the direction of Greenoaks Funeral Home.

Visitation will be from 4 to 7 p.m. today at Greenoaks Funeral Home.

A reception will take place at Greenoaks Life Celebration Center following the services.

Mr. Payton was born in Natchez, the son of Lola Mitchell and Rabon D. Payton.

Mr. Payton was a founding member of St. Jude Catholic Church in Baton Rouge. A graduate of the University of Southern Mississippi, he began working at LSU in the comptroller’s office in 1963 until he joined the staff of the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine when the school began in 1973. In 1987, he received a staff award in recognition of meritorious service to the school. He retired from there as assistant to the dean for business affairs in 2000. Mr. Payton’s family, especially his grandchildren, was among his greatest joy, and his garden, oh how he loved a good homegrown tomato. Against the wishes of his children, he still loved his Ole Miss Rebels, but had been caught pulling for LSU from time to time. His grandchildren’s love of the Tigers and his 40 plus years as an LSU employee made him a Tiger fan too.

Survivors include his wife of 56 years, Rose Marie Darsey Payton; son James E. Payton Jr. and wife, Jennifer, of Denham Springs; daughters, Tena Payton McKenzie and husband, Rickey, of Brandon, and Selina Payton Reynolds and husband, Patrick, of Baton Rouge; grandchildren, Bobby Joe Payton, Weston Payton, Trace Payton, Payton Reynolds, and Gracie Reynolds; great grandson, Brantley; sisters, June Chalmers and Sandra Lofton; sisters-in-laws. Frances Joffrion and June Woolfolk; more than 30 nieces and nephews; goddaughter, Anna Huffines; LSU retiree friends who will miss having him join them for coffee every Saturday; and grand dogs, Rascal, Sophie, and Chloe, who will miss getting under his feet and on his nerves.

He was preceded in death by his parents; and sister, Merle Trask.

Pallbearers will be Payton Reynolds, Weston Payton, Trace Payton, Gary Paul Joffrion, Daniel Huffines and Byron Prince.

Honorary pallbearers are his LSU coffee buddies.

In lieu of flowers, the family request donations be made in Mr. Payton’s name for Batson Children’s Hospital to Friends of Children’s Hospital, 3900 Lakeland Dr. No. 205 Flowood, MS 39232.