James Brabble, affectionately known as “Obed”, bid farewell to this world on July 22, 2023, at the age of 84. Born on October 19, 1938, in his beloved hometown of Washington, NC, Obed was a remarkable individual with an unmistakable zest for life.
Obed’s work history was a testament to his tenacity and drive. He dedicated four decades of his life to Weyerhaeuser, proving that loyalty and hard work were truly in his DNA. However, his adventurous spirit led him down an entrepreneurial path, where he proudly owned and operated Brabble’s Stump Grinding Service for over forty years. This man was no stranger to getting things done!
Before diving headfirst into the business world, Obed briefly served in the Airforce after completing high school. While his time there was short, his commitment to duty and country left an indelible mark on his character.
Apart from his professional endeavors, Obed possessed a wide range of interests. He derived immense pleasure from working and making money, as if they were his favorite hobbies. Woodworking was another passion that fueled his creative soul. Restoring cars, such as his cherished 1955 Chevy and 1966 Plymouth Sport Fury brought him great joy and a sense of accomplishment.
But let’s not forget about Obed’s green thumb! Mowing his expansive lawn, which seemed to grow overnight, was like a battle against nature itself. He had a sixth sense, and his ears would perk as if alerted by silent alarm; seemingly he could hear his grass growing, and it transformed him into a lawn-warrior reminiscent of Attila the Hun. The man sure knew how to take care of his turf!
Throughout his life, Obed remained devoted to his community and faith. He spent four years as president of the Ruritan Club, where he made a significant impact on the lives of many. For a staggering forty-five years, he dedicated himself to Washington Assembly of God, both attending and actively participating in its activities. His commitment to his faith was unwavering.
Family was at the forefront of Obed’s heart. He cherished every moment spent with his beloved wife of nearly fifty years, Betty Lou Brabble. Together, they raised a son, Jay Brabble Jr. of Chocowinity, NC, and three daughters: Anna Gale Brabble of Chocowinity, NC, Bobbie Rossetti and husband Tony of Farmville, NC, Wendy Todd and husband Garland of Greenville, NC; Obed’s pride and joy were his grandchildren: Danny and Jacob George of Fredericksburg, VA, Leah Spruill also of Fredericksburg, and Tabitha Ward of Greenville, NC. And let us not forget his four great-grandsons, Cade Londeree, Coy and Shawn “SJ” Alsop, Daniel Ray George, and his great-granddaughter, Olivia Faith George. He is preceded in death by his parents Raeford Harris Brabble and Minnie Olivia Brabble, as well as his daughter Becky George.
He did lose his first wife of sixteen years, Judy Brown-with whom he had three children: the already mentioned Becky, Anna, and Jay; but in his second marriage he gained two new wonderful daughters Bobby and Wendy, who grew as close as his own.
Services to celebrate Obed’s life will be held as follows: visitation at Joseph B. Paul Jr. Funeral Service on Wednesday, July 26, 2023 from 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM. The funeral service will take place at 2:00 PM on Thursday July 27, 2023 at Washington Assembly of God, followed by burial at Oakdale Cemetery in Washington, NC. Pallbearers will be Tom Adams, Elwood Cutler, Milton Eshelman, Keith Goehring, Robbie Cox, and Keith Rakowski Jr.
Obed will always be remembered for his magnetic personality that drew family and friends to him like a force of nature. His collards were hailed as the best on the east coast, and his fried chicken was nothing short of legendary. A true master of the kitchen, he knew how to nourish both body and soul.
In the wake of Obed’s departure, our hearts are heavy, but our memories of him will forever bring smiles to our faces. He lived life to the fullest, leaving an indelible mark on all who had the privilege of knowing him.
Rest easy, Obed “James” Brabble, and may your spirit continue to inspire us all.
2:00 PM - 3:00 PM
Washington Assembly of God - Directions
4500 Hwy 264 E. Washington NC
- Wednesday, July 26, 2023
5:00 PM - 8:00 PM