Cover photo for James (Jim) Nelson Shelton's Obituary
James (Jim) Nelson Shelton Profile Photo

James (Jim) Nelson Shelton

James (Jim) Nelson Shelton, age 87, passed away on September 22, 2019 at Sunrise Senior Living in Burke, VA due to complications from Alzheimer’s. Jim was born in Scott County, VA on December 11, 1931 to Rosa Lee Davidson Shelton and Claude C. Shelton. He was one of seven siblings. He is survived by his wife of 68 years, Jacquline Wynn Shelton, his daughter Karen Shelton Chevalier (Mark), his son James N. Shelton II (Sarah), his sister Virginia Bennett (A.T.), grandchildren Jacqueline Chevalier Mosely (Benjamin), Dr. Caroline Chevalier (Adam Dec), Philip Chevalier, James “Trey” Shelton III, Grace Shelton, Coleman Shelton, and Catherine Shelton, and his brother-in-law Charles Robert Wynn, plus numerous nieces and nephews and his beloved dog Sally.

In addition to his parents, Jim was predeceased by his sisters Lectie Purdy (Ralph) and Ida Cregger (Alvin) and his brothers Clyde Shelton, Claude “Mack” Shelton (Juanita), and Eugene Shelton (Iris).

Jim joined the U.S. Army in 1946 at age 14 and served in the occupation forces in Germany, rising to the rank of sergeant. After his honorable discharge, he went to work at The Kingsport Press in Kingsport, TN, beginning a long and successful career in the printing industry. Jim quickly rose through the ranks and was instrumental in bringing web offset printing to the plant. During the Kingsport Press strike in the early 1960’s, Jim was a driving force in keeping the plant open and operating. Jim was the Superintendent of Printing when the press was bought by Arcata National. Recognizing his expertise in printing technology, Jim was transferred to Arcata Graphics in Buffalo, NY and soon after to Pacific Press in Los Angeles. His leadership turned around both plants to profitability. Prior to his departure from Arcata National, Jim was the Executive Vice President for Western U.S. Operations. After leaving Arcata, Jim consulted for several printing companies across the U.S.

In 1986, Jim and Jackie returned to southwest Virginia to build their dream home on Jackie’s family farm in Pennington Gap. During retirement Jim contributed to his community, serving as the chair of the board of trustees for the First United Methodist Church and on the board of directors for the Mountain Empire Community College Foundation. He volunteered for the Appalachian Service Project, was active in Democratic politics, and ran for the Lee County Board of Supervisors. Jim and Jackie opened their home for numerous political events and fundraisers hosting Governors Chuck Robb, Mark Warner, and Tim Kaine, as well as Congressman Rick Boucher.

Most of all Jim took great joy in working in his woodworking shop and gifting friends and family with his handiwork. He loved spending time with his family, especially his grandchildren, and hosted many wonderful family reunions on “The Farm.”

There will be a celebration of Jim’s life on October 5, 2019, 1:00 at First United Methodist Church in Pennington Gap. After the service, Jackie and the family will receive friends at their home. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to First United Methodist Church in Pennington Gap, VA.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of James (Jim) Nelson Shelton, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Celebration of Jim’s Life

Saturday, October 5, 2019

Starts at 1:00 pm (Eastern time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


Visits: 0

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the
Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Service map data © OpenStreetMap contributors

Send Flowers

Send Flowers

Plant A Tree

Plant A Tree