Cover photo for James "Jim" Strawn, III's Obituary
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James "Jim" Strawn, III

January 24, 1943 — May 24, 2024

Little Rock

James "Jim" Strawn, III

James Wesley “Jim” Strawn, III, also affectionately called “Peep” by his grandkids and others, died on May 24, 2024, after a recent stroke. 

Jim was born in Little Rock, on January 24, 1943, to James and Rebecca Strawn. Being their only son, he was the apple of his mother’s eye and remained so until her death at 94. He had two older sisters, Jane and Anne, and he spoke fondly of his memories with them and their friends. It was with them that he learned to dance and honed his athletic skills. 

Jim is survived by his devoted wife of 50 years, Libby Strawn; his daughters: Sunny Williams (Larry), Sandy Smith (Chuck), Ashley Breaux, Erin Adelman, and Tami McLean (Hunter), and seven grandchildren: Rosanne White (Ben), Ginger Peterson (Jake), Clayton Smith, Addie McClain (Andrew), Hunter McLean and Matthew McLean, and Chloe Adelman; and great-grandsons: Hayden and Trelyn Breaux, Harvey and Wesley Whiteand James Joseph Peterson. He was predeceased by his grandson Joey Breaux.

Jim attended Little Rock Public Schools until the Little Rock integration crisis. After a Hall High August football practice he came home to discover he would be attending the McCauley School in Chattanooga, TN. His academic experience there shaped not only his intellect but contributed to the Renaissance man that he became. Jim was a lover of art, a wordsmith, and a gifted listener, and made all that met him feel seen and heard. After two years at McCauley, he attended Little Rock University, while also working many hours a week at his family’s furniture store.

Before long, Jim became not only the third generation owner of Strawn’s Fine Furniture, but also a respected designer working jobs across the country including the US Capitol. He went on to flourish in the financial industry: Crow Mortgage Company; Arkansas Federal Savings and Loan; EIS, a national barcode labeling company; and Smith Capital Management, where he spent 20 deeply gratifying years as a financial advisor before his recent retirement. 

One of Jim’s greatest pleasures was owning a small yacht on the Arkansas River. He named it “Daddy’s Dream” because it had always been a desire of his father’s to own a yacht. He also greatly enjoyed traveling with Libby, especially to France, to be with friends they had known who had worked for Dassault Falcon Jet in Little Rock.  

After his retirement he enjoyed taking adventures to other places with Libby, family, and friends, and spent many hours tending to his prized backyard tomatoes. Desiring a deeper relationship with his adult daughters, he felt called to initiate annual one-on-one Daddy/Daughter trips, and all five girls have said what a blessing that time spent with him meant to them.

His time with children brought out his magical childlike wonder. Jim loved telling stories to his girls when they were small, and one of those stories was about a character named “Gary Gazoot.” One of his most creative accomplishments as an adult was writing a children’s book, Gary Gazoot’s Picnic Adventure.  

Jim’s greatest joy and fulfillment was his relationship with Christ. He grew tremendously through the ministry of Men’s Fraternity at Fellowship Bible Church, so much that he began teaching the material to other young men in his life. He taught many boys to read at STEP Ministries. He invested in others behind the scenes, giving substantial time to men that were lacking role models in their lives. He left a rich deposit of faith, love, and encouragement in the lives of all that knew him. 

A service honoring Jim’s life will be held on Friday, May 31st, at 2:00pm at Fellowship Bible Church, at 1401 Kirk Road in Little Rock, AR. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that those who wish to honor Jim’s legacy make a donation to their favorite ministry. 

 

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Friday, May 31, 2024

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