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Brother James Biggs – Oldest Texas Mason

 

An Icon Becomes A Legend

James Kenner James K Biggs Sr., 109, a long time Dallas resident of Monticello West, died on May 6, 2012. James was born on December 5, 1902 in San Marcos, TX. James was a dedicated, active 85 year Mason, the longest serving Mason in Texas history. James was a member of York Rite, Scottish Rite, Eastern Star and the Shrine. James was a lifelong Christian, a loving father, grandfather, great grandfather and devoted husband of 58 years to Beatrice Coker, who preceded him in death.  You can find a copy of Brother Biggs’ favorite poem by Robert Burns, Farewell to the Brethren of St James Lodge Tarbolton

Here is the video from the Dallas Morning News Commemorating him for his 85 years of service to the Fraternity.

-The following Tribute was read at the event.

A Tribute to Our Brother, Mr. Biggs

A centennial and nine …marks short, two life spans of mankind.
Granted we all desire to journey such an extension, but life being
what it is, if we can’t, let us honor the specially rare ones that do!

Freshness of a newly turned Century.
–Rare indeed, James Biggs …talks of seeing his first automobile.
It’s 1911; the nine year old Lad, runs blocks to witness a noisy, smoky
contraption putt-putt by.

The Great Era of Industrial Revolution, gears turn in full motion.
Modernization springs forth–
Young James switches on Edison’s early light,
hand cranks and yells into Bell’s black mouthpiece.
News of the day…a fellow named Einstein announces relativity.
Two Brothers take to the air in NC.

Grief –synonymous to life!
A time of Sadness …the lost souls of the Titanic.
The Great War, James mourns his fallen countrymen.
Reluctantly, Grandpa Biggs whispers secrets,
…Civil War antidotes;
Captain Biggs rode his own horse into battle.

Youthful fantasy – sandlot baseball,
Hot-fast pitches don’t pass-by catcher Biggs.
The Golden Age Radio– James counts idol, Babe ‘s homeruns,
cheers the big trade …Babe Ruth became a N.Y. Yankee.

Still in infancy, the Boy Scouts hone James
to “Be Prepared”.
–Soon thereafter, becomes a Scout Master,
the merit badge of commanding his own Troop.

An eleventh grade graduate receives a teaching certificate,
The summon to West Texas, James, a youthful teacher at 18,
teaches math and spanish in Marathon, Texas. –Later tangles with

scientific acronyms that became his life’s logic.

The oldest of five siblings, leadership is second nature to James.

Becomes of lawful age, makes suitable proficiency,
James raises to the sublime degree of Master Mason
in San Marcos Lodge.
Biggs’ Father, a Mason wholly supports son’s choice.
Masonry guides him to: Knights Templar, a 32 ° Scottish Rite,
and the prestigious KCCH.

The Great Depression reduces sustainable lifestyles.
James watches as fellow America stumbles into the Grapes of Wrath.
Radio waves broadcast: the busting barrels of Prohibition.
Painful shouts of a reporter, decries fiery blazes of the Hindenburg.
…A stark Mad-man marches millions into ghastly chambers.
The English voice …Sir Winston, calls for allies’ military support,
World War II draws Americans onto foreign soil.
Biggs serves his country …sets sail for four years of Naval Radar
Technology. Radar interception, a key in war tactics.
D Day, V Day, Pearl Harbor; “A Day In Infamy”,
Korea, Vietnam and so on.

James hears the megaphone shouts of: McKinley, Roosevelt,
Taft, Wilson, Harding. All in all, Biggs sees twenty U.S.
Presidents preside over America the Beautiful.

James takes lovely Beatrice, as a partner for life.
The Biggs’ married 56 years, raise a beautiful
family
of three precious children, two sons and a
daughter.

When asked about secrets of longevity, he proclaims –none.

James Biggs lived these moments –we call history.

Congratulations Brother James Biggs
–and thank you for running interference!

May GOD Bless You!

Written and read by Poet: J. Darrell Kirkley
copyright – January 15, 2012

… And here is the interview that Brother Darrell Kirkley and Charles Mc Kay made with Brother Biggs when he was 105 …

 

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