James Andrew Payne was born on November 9, 1934 in Tahlequah, Oklahoma. The son of Andrew Hartley Payne and Vivian Shaddox Payne, he and his sister Norma Jean Payne Roupe spent the majority of their childhood in Oklahoma City. Jim is a member of the Cherokee tribe.
After three years at Northeast High School, he went to Northeastern College in Tahlequah. He graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering Physics at age 19. After university, Jim served in the Army during the Korean War and later received his Ph.D. from UCLA. He then joined the faculty of the Engineering College at the University of Oklahoma.
Jim had three passions: his family, his church and OU football.
On February 10, 1966, he married the love of his life Glenda Gamble Payne. Together they raised two children, Ian Andrew Payne and Teresa Stanton Collett. During the summers, Jim consulted with NASA, and the family spent summers in Massachusetts, California and Virginia.
Jim was blessed with a son-in-law who shared his passion for family and OU football – Robert Hugh Collett – three devoted grandchildren – Robert Hugh Collett, Jr., Christina Collett Krautbauer, Laura Collett Forcella – and their spouses, as well as five lively great-grandchildren – Jenna Elizabeth Forsyth, Thomas Evan Forsyth VI, Lynn Collett Krautbauer, Gilbert Hugh Krautbauer and Becket Payne Collett.
Jim passed away on August 19, 2013, and a memorial service will be held at noon on Saturday, August 24 at St. Luke's United Methodist Church, 222 NW 15th Street, Oklahoma City. For more than twenty years, the church has played a central role in Jim and Glenda's lives. Jim has assisted with televising church services for more than ten years, and the couple frequently helped serve communion.
Jim is survived by his wife, sister, children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. Memorial contributions may be made to St. Luke's United Methodist Church garden fund to continue the work that Jim began by renovating the church fountains in honor of his wife, or to other charitable organizations.
Arrangements have been entrusted to the care of Primrose Funeral Service, www.primrosefuneralservice.com.