James Preston Powers, Jr., 78, of Lumberton, NC, passed away at his home on Thursday, April 20, 2017, after a lengthy illness. Mr. Powers was born in Lumberton on November 5, 1938 to the late J. Preston Powers, Sr. and Pansye Keaton Powers. He was in banking for more than 38 years, with the last 18 years as President of Progressive Savings and Loan (later Progressive State Bank). After graduating from Cerro Gordo High School, Mr. Powers attended The Citadel in Charleston, SC, graduating in the Class of 1960. He was a faithful member of his church where he served as a deacon and on various committees. He will be remembered for all his service within the local community as he served on the Robeson County Board of Elections, was a board member of Robeson House, the local board of Wesley Pines Retirement Center, helped raise funds for the local Boy Scouts chapter, and was a member of Toastmasters International. Mr. Powers spent many years in the Jaycee Organization, holding offices on local, regional, and national levels. He was a lifetime member of the Lumberton Jaycees and a member of the JCI Senate #10727. He has received many awards, including the Micou Browne Award, the Ed Ellis Award, and was named one of “Five Outstanding Young Men of NC” in 1975. He organized and served as chairman of the first Robeson County Special Olympics. An activist in many local and state political campaigns, he also served on the NC State Board of Natural Resources for a time. Mr. Powers was preceded in death by his parents, three children in infancy, his son, Nigel B. Powers, and a sister. He is survived by his wife of 57 years, Dorothy Johnson Powers; a daughter, Dedra Powers Stilley of Goldsboro; two grandsons: Cullus Gene Stilley, Jr. and James Michael Stilley of Jay, OK; a brother-in-law, Michael Johnson and wife Brenda of Hope Mills; a sister-in-law, Julia Johnson of Lake View, SC; five nieces and nephews; and five great-nieces and great-nephews. A memorial service will be held on Sunday, April 23, 2017, at 3:00 PM at First Baptist Church with Rev. Michael Johnson and Dr. David Elks officiating. The family will receive friends following the service and other times at the home. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to First Baptist Church, 602 N. Walnut Street, Lumberton, NC 28358, or to Special Olympics of North Carolina, 2200 Gateway Centre Blvd., Suite 201, Morrisville, NC 27560-9122.

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Posted on: 2017-04-25

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