It is with great sadness that the family of Mary Lee James announces her passing on Thursday, Feb. 23, 2018, at the age of 80 years, at Palmetto Health Tuomey.

Mary Lee James will be lovingly remembered by her children, family and her friends.

Mary Lee James was born on Aug. 2, 1937, in Clarendon County, a daughter of the late Henry and Agnes Plowden Williams. She was married to the late Henry Thomas James. Mary Lee James was educated in the Sumter County public school system. During the early years of her life, she was a committed Christian and member of New Jerusalem Church in Sumter, where she served as a Sunday school teacher and choir member. Her favorite Bible verses were John 3:16 and Psalm 23. Mary Lee was a very passionate and lovable woman, who was no stranger to anyone and was willing to help anyone who was in need. She also lived many of her adult years in Elizabeth, New Jersey, where she was employed by Union County Chemical Works.

Mary was a devoted wife and mother to eight children (three that have gone before her), five which live to cherish her memories: Henrietta James Brunson (Louis), Catherine Bracey, Daisy Rebecca James and Sarah Elizabeth James, all of Sumter, and Henry Lee James of Richmond, Virginia; two sisters and two brothers, Girleen Jackson, Betty McDonald and Shadrack Williams of Sumter, and Ferdinand and Earleen Williams of Philadelphia; 14 grandchildren; 20 great-grandchildren; two sisters-in-law, Juanita (Thomas) Joyner and Mary Burgess; one son-in-law, Earl English; and a host of nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Henry T. James; her daughter, Janette Montgomery English; her sons, Thomas James and Harry Lee James; three brothers, Mashack Williams, Thomas Williams and John Henry Williams; and one son-in-law, Marion Bracey.

Mary Lee enjoyed spending her time with family, talking and laughing. She had a radiant personality that shined on everyone that she encountered and she embraced every moment of life. She also enjoyed spending her pastime with her friends, Minnie Lee, Naomi, Sarah, Betty and Hattie at the city local bingo facility.

The family is receiving relatives and friends at the home, 48 Dunway Drive, Sumter.

Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. on Thursday at Berea Seventh Day-Adventist Church, 675 S. Lafayette Drive, Sumter, with pastor Michael Miller, eulogist.

The remains will be placed in the church at 1 p.m.

The procession will leave at 1:15 p.m. from the home.

Burial will be at Bradford Cemetery.

Services directed by the management and staff of Williams Funeral Home Inc., 821 N. Main St., Sumter.

Online memorial messages may be sent to the family at Visit us on the web at