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Courtesy of Muskogee Phoenix

James L. Norman
© Muskogee Phoenix
10/14/2008 - 10/16/2008
Submitted by: Jo Aguirre

James L. Norman passed away on Saturday, October 11, 2008 at the age of 86. He was born on February 27, 1922 in Dyersburg, TN, to Robert Nathan and Dawn (Smith) Norman. After growing up in Dyersburg, he attended the University of Tennessee and graduated from the University of Kansas with a degree in Entomology. He did graduate work at the University of Oklahoma. A position with the Army Corps of Engineers taking malarial mosquito surveys brought him to the Muskogee area. While working in Muskogee, he met Marion Bebb and they were married on December 30, 1952. He had a long career as sales manager and co-owner of the Bebb Floral Company. Jim and Marion have three daughters.Jimís many areas of interest and expertise included bird watching, botany, and photography. He was instrumental in the organization of the Oklahoma Ornithological Society in the 1950ís and has remained an active member. Jim held leadership roles in numerous organizations including Indian Nations Audubon Society, Oklahoma Native Plant Society, Oklahoma Academy of Science, Muskogee Garden Club, and Kiwanis Club. He also served as deacon and elder at First Presbyterian Church.Jim was a devoted and loving husband for 56 years, and brought joy and much laughter to his children, six grandchildren, and many friends. He was small in stature, but his personality was larger than life. His enthusiasm was evident to all, and through his many interests, he touched countless lives. Jim was never happier than when he was out in nature, leading birding trips, photographing wildflowers, or camping and canoeing with his family. He and Marion traveled in 49 states, Mexico, Canada, and Central America searching for birds to add to their ďlife listsĒ, but he loved Oklahoma because of the unusually wide variety of bird and flower species that abound here.Jimís boundless energy, humor, and zest for life will be missed by all, but especially by his wife, Marion, daughter, Mary Dawn Mott and son-in-law, Keith of Tulsa; daughter, Laura Schwarz of Charleston, SC; daughter, Molly Kennedy and son-in-law, David of Charlotte, NC; grandchildren, Emily and Blake Mott, Tara Schwarz, and Andrew, Nathan, and Claire Kennedy. He is also survived by a brother and sister-in-law, Lt. Col. Joe R. and Peggy Norman of Dyersburg, TN. He was preceded in death by his parents.Public visitation will be held Wednesday, from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at Bradley Funeral Service. A celebration of Jimís life will be held at 10:00 a.m., Thursday, October 16, 2008 at the First Presbyterian Church with Reverend Ann Brizendine officiating. Interment will follow in Greenhill Cemetery with Keith Mott, Nathan Kennedy, David Kennedy, David Gill, Blake Mott and Andrew Kennedy serving as pallbearers.Those planning an expression of sympathy are asked to consider the Indian Nations Chapter Audubon Society, c/o 206 S. Crabtree Rd., Muskogee OK 74403 or the Oklahoma Nature Conservancy c/o 2727 E. 21st St., Suite 102, Tulsa OK 74114, www.nature.org/oklahoma.The family has entrusted Bradley Family Funeral Service of Muskogee with the arrangements. Friends may send condolences to the family in the web page www.bradleyfuneralservice.com

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