James Henry Beck, affectionately known to friends and family as "Henry", was welcomed into Heaven by his Lord and Savior on July 7, 2014. Henry, aged 90, was born in Wilmington, North Carolina on March 5, 1924 to the late William Henry Beck and Dola Beck Sawyer. He spent his formative years in Gum Neck, North Carolina and throughout his life he fondly referred to the small town as "home."
Henry learned the meaning of a hard day's work early in life when he joined the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s. A World War II veteran, Henry served his country in the Merchant Marines and aboard U.S. Army Transportation vessels in foreign seas. Notably, he served aboard U.S.A.T. Excelsior, which carried troops from England to Normandy for D-Day. A welder by trade, Henry could fix just about anything and was always willing to lend a helping hand. He worked as a civil servant for over 30 years and retired from Naval Air Station Norfolk in 1980. Following retirement, Henry enjoyed life to the fullest by traveling throughout the United States and abroad. During this time, he never missed an opportunity to spend time with his growing family.
Henry was met in glory by his parents, his beloved brother and best friend, Ottis Edison Beck, his sister-in-law Lena Basnight Beck, his niece Iris Ann Beck Woodcock, and his son-in-law Rev. Benny B. Hampton, Sr. Left to cherish his memory is his Wife of nearly 70 years, Annie Inez Cahoon Beck, along with his children, Rev. James Terry Beck and wife Mary Nell of Norfolk; Sharon Beck Hampton of Chesapeake; and Theresa Beck Lockhart and husband Jesse of Chesapeake. A wonderful Granddaddy, Henry is also survived by 10 adoring grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren. Other surviving family members include his brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, and many loved nieces and nephews.
Above all, Henry was known to family and friends as a true man of God. He was an active member of Hyde Park Free Will Baptist Church for over 30 years. Those who knew him were blessed to witness his example of God's love. On Friday, July 11th, a viewing will be held at 10:00 AM at Rosewood-Kellum Funeral Home located at 601 North Witchduck Road in Virginia Beach. A service to celebrate his life will be held immediately after at 11:00 AM. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be sent to Henry's grandson's mission at St. Croix Free Will Baptist School, in care of Hyde Park Baptist Church, at 8501 Chesapeake Blvd.; Norfolk, Virginia 23503.