On Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2021, at 11:24 a.m., James “JP” received his heavenly wings. Mr. James Pitt Jr., the son of the late James Pitt Sr. and Hytonia Battle Pitt, was born Dec. 24, 1927, in West Norfolk Portsmouth. He was a graduate of I.C. Norcum High School in Portsmouth. He was an excellent saxophone player. While traveling to the Eastern Shore to play with the band at Downing’s Beach, he met and married the love of his life, Myrtle Howard. They were married June 2, 1951, and this union was blessed with 10 children. He served in the U.S. Army honorably during the Korean War. As a veteran, he was a charter signing member of the Eastern Shore DAV Chapter #61.
James became a self-employed truck driver. As an entrepreneur, he hauled long and short distances over the road for more than 40 years. He also enjoyed farming and being a commerce waterman on his boat, the Play Boy. He joined St. Mary’s Baptist Church, Jamesville, under the leadership of the Rev. Morris Baines. James was then ordained as a deacon. He also served as trustee, church treasurer, senior choir member, and pastor’s aide until his health declined. He was dedicated and always willing to do his part and beyond. James was the patriarch of the family for five generations. He was a devoted husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, great-great-grandfather, uncle, and brother, and he became friends with anyone he met.
He was preceded in death by his parents; son, Freddie Pitt; sister, Bernice Harmon; brother, Hosey; and two nephews.
James leaves to cherish great memories: his loving wife of 69 years, Myrtle M. Pitt; his children, Anna P. Anderson, of Jamesville, Arline Riley (Thomas Sr.), of Melfa, James Pitt III, of Jamesville, Jean Dunton (Robert), of Eastville, Albert Pitt, of New Jersey, the Rev. Norman Pitt (Karen), of Wachapreague, Kathy Pitt, of Belle Haven, Priscilla Johnson (Herbert), of the Eastern Shore, and Gerald Pitt, of Melfa; 43 grandchildren; 61 great-grandchildren; 20 great-great-grandchildren; sister-in-law, Annette Chandler, of South Carolina; brother-in-law, Sidney Harmon Sr., of Portsmouth; his adopted sons, Tyrone Davis, Willie and Leon White, and Jerome Hack; good friends, Deacon “Berkley” Purnell Collins, Deacon Thomas Mapp, and Persell Beckett Sr.; nephews, Sidney Harmon and Andres Harmon; nieces, Donta Harmon and Cindy Massenburg; and a host of cousins, friends, and St. Mary’s Baptist Church Family.