Edward "Ned" James Obituary

Ned James
Edward "Ned" Michael James

April 12, 1923 - January 16, 2017
Born in New London, CT
Resided in Niantic, CT


Niantic - Edward (Ned) Michael James of Black Point Beach, Niantic, passed away peacefully at home on Monday, Jan. 16, 2017, surrounded by his six children.

Ned was born in New London on April 12, 1923, the son of John H. James and Helena Dray James. He was a graduate of the Bulkeley School in New London and graduated from Georgetown University in 1946. Ned was a lifelong resident of New London and also Black Point Beach Club, Niantic, where he most recently lived. In 1951, he met and married Rosemary Margaret James (Quish) and together they had six children and settled into their family home on Lower Boulevard, ever the gathering place for family events. Rosemary predeceased him on March 14, 2000. He was also predeceased by his parents, John and Helena Dray James, as well as by his sister, Elizabeth E James.

Since 1941, Ned was president of James Drug Company, Inc., located at 181 Bank St., New London. James Drug was founded by his father, John H. James in 1914, and was a family run business for 82 years. After graduating from Georgetown with a degree in business, Ned attended and graduated from the University of Connecticut School of Pharmacy with his bachelor of science degree in pharmacy. Upon his father's death in 1952, Ned and his sister, Elizabeth E. James, continued to successfully operate the business until 1996 upon which both retired. Under their leadership, James Drug Company saw vast growth and many changes to the independent retail pharmacy business. James Drug became the first regional drugstore to sell surgical supplies and offer home healthcare services. Another milestone was achieved in 1962 when James Drug celebrated its second millionth prescription which was for a drug manufactured by Pfizer, Inc. This was a very unique achievement for an independent drug firm and recognized by many pharmaceutical companies with commemorative plaques. When the drug store was first founded, prescriptions were delivered by horse and carriage. By the late 1960s the rapid growth included a fleet of modern trucks which delivered prescriptions compounded by a staff of seven registered pharmacists to private homes and convalescent hospitals throughout Southeastern Connecticut. In 1965, James Drug expanded to sell gourmet food and fine wines in what was called James' Epicure Shop. In 1972, James Drug opened James & Company in Watch Hill, R.I. which operated during the summer months from 1972 to 1985 bringing the same level of customer service to this summer community. The store had a constant and ready staff of six James children who spent all their summers working in this seasonal store.

Always an avid Georgetown Hoya fan, he relished the fact that three of his six children followed in his footsteps graduating from Georgetown. As a teenager, he was an avid racer of Star Boats at the Niantic Bay Yacht Club and instilled a love of sailing and other sports in all his children and grandchildren. During his life, Ned was very involved with Catholic Charities of Norwich Diocese. He was a member of Rotary International, the LAMBS Club, New London Country Club, the Thames Yacht Club, the Niantic Bay Yacht Club and the Thames Club of New London. He was a lifetime communicant of St. Joseph Church in New London.

Ned is survived by his six children, Claudia James of Arlington, Va., John H. James of Waterford, Maura H. James of Old Black Point and Manhattan, N.Y., Mark A. James of West Chester, Pa., Mary Liz James of Stonington, and Margaret James of Waterford. He also leaves nine grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 21 at St. Joseph Church, 17 Squire St., New London followed with a burial in St. Mary's Cemetery, New London. There are no calling hours. Thomas L. Neilan and Sons Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

In lieu of flowers, please send donations to St. Joseph Church Capital Fund, 37 Squire St., New London, CT 06378, or Catholic Charities of Norwich, 331 Main Street, Norwich, CT 06360.




St. Joseph Church
17 Squire Street
New London, CT US 06320
Saturday, January 21, 2017
11:00 AM
St. Mary Cemetery
600 Jefferson Avenue
New London, CT US 06320
Saturday, January 21, 2017
12:15 PM


St. Joseph Capital Fund
37 Squire St.
New London, CT US 06320
Catholic Charities of Norwich
331 Main Street
Norwich, CT 06360
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