James Irvin Rhew obituary photo
 
In Memory of

James Irvin Rhew

January 18, 1925 - June 10, 2017

Obituary


RHEW, James (Jim) I., 92, of Dover, FL passed away on June 10, 2017. He was born January 18, 1925 in Burlington, NC to Ed and Marie Rhew. He joined the U.S. Army Air Corps in 1942 during WW2 and flew over Germany, Africa and France. When he joined the Army there was No Air Force, but when it was formed in 1947, he was made part of the Air Force.

Jim was a ball turret gunner in WW2, 458th Bombardment Group H. His airplane was a B24-H named "The Cat's Ass". After...

RHEW, James (Jim) I., 92, of Dover, FL passed away on June 10, 2017. He was born January 18, 1925 in Burlington, NC to Ed and Marie Rhew. He joined the U.S. Army Air Corps in 1942 during WW2 and flew over Germany, Africa and France. When he joined the Army there was No Air Force, but when it was formed in 1947, he was made part of the Air Force.

Jim was a ball turret gunner in WW2, 458th Bombardment Group H. His airplane was a B24-H named "The Cat's Ass". After having an engine shot out he made an emergency landing in Switzerland, where he became a POW until the end of the war.

In the 50's and 60's he belonged to the 337th Fighter Group consolidated aircraft maintenance squadron. After the war ended he was discharged, and subsequently reenlisted multiple times, retiring officially in 1966 from the Air Force and then in 1976 from the Air Force Reserves.

He and his family moved to Tampa, FL from Burlington in 1969. He loved boating, fishing, and most of all, his picking and grinning. He was a member of the IOOB club and the SOB boat club of Cedar Grove in Ruskin, FL. In 1983 he and the band he played with, Southland Bluegrass, won 3rd place in the Florida State Bluegrass Championship. He was an original and lifetime member of the Soggy Bottom Bluegrass Bunch. Jim played until he wasn't able to any longer, and continued to sing until just before his passing.

Jim is predeceased by his wife Lucille "Lucy" Rhew and his grandson Troy (TJ). Survivors include one sister, Violet Spoon, three children: Sandra Ford, Billie Wheeler, and James David Rhew; five grandchildren: Michael, Michelle, Stephen, Sammie, Jenny; four great grandchildren: Mackenzie, Declan, Sasha and Schuyler.

A funeral service with military honors will be at 1pm Saturday, June 17, 2017 with visitation from 12 pm to 1pm at Wells Memorial Funeral Home.

Online condolences may be offered at www.wellsmemorial.com.