Rev. James Houseal
March 19, 2018
Rev. James Emlon Houseal, 87, of Moultrie, Ga., died Friday, March 9, 2018, at Colquitt Regional Medical Center.
Funeral services were held Tuesday, March 13, 2018, at Cobb Funeral Chapel with the Rev. Jimmy Voyles and the Rev. Dan Robinson officiating. Interment, with military honors, followed in Cobb Suncrest Memorial Gardens.
Casketbearers were Scott DeMott, Roy Reeves, Dr. Randy Benner, Lawton Matthews, Shannon Ritchie, Rev. Walter Powell, Dr. Jim Allen, Rev. Wayne Mitchell, Larry Slightom and Bill McCalley. Honorary casketbearers were pastors in the South Georgia Conference and residents that have been on Kairos at Autry State Prison and Autry State Prison Kairos Team members.
He was preceded in death by his parents, William B. Houseal and Mary Sessions Houseal; brothers, Walter S. Houseal and Bill Houseal; and niece, Beth Houseal.
Reverend Houseal was born October 12, 1930, in Birmingham Ala. He graduated from Battle Ground Academy in Franklin, Tenn. in 1949. He joined the U.S. Army in 1950, went to Fort Jackson, S.C. for Infantry Basic Training and then to Fort Sill, Oklahoma. In the latter part of 1952 he received orders to the Republic of Korea where he joined a “Bastarded Artillery Outfit” in or around The Reservoir. He recalled that it didn’t have any water, but plenty of snow and ice. Jim served as a Forward Observer in direct support of the 7th Infantry Regiment around “Pork Chop Hill.” On one given day the hill was over-run and the regiment won it back 16 times in hand to hand combat. The First Sergeant and Jim were captured by the Chinese and North Koreans but escaped four days later. Staff Sergeant Houseal rotated back to the States in 1953 and was Honorably Discharged in Fort Breckenridge, Kentucky. He then returned to Alabama where he attended Auburn University from 1954 to 1955, transferring to Birmingham Southern College from 1955 to 1956. In June of 1956 he joined the U.S. Navy, was stationed in Charleston, South Carolina from 1956 to 1970 and served on board four different destroyers all out of Newport, Rhode Island. He was in Danang, Vietnam from 1966 to 1967 working Shore Patrol. After two months he rode shot gun taking supplies to the “Rock Pile.” He stayed at sea nearly 14 years before going to the Naval Reserve Center in Columbus, Georgia in the latter part of 1970, where he stayed until his retirement in 1975 as a Chief Boatswains Mate. From 1950-1975 he received the following 12 medals and unit citations: Navy Good Conduct with a Star, National Defense with Star, Korean Service Ribbon Four Stars, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Vietnam Service Medal with Star, United Nations Korean Service, Vietnam Campaign Medal, Korean War Service Medal, Army Presidential Unit Citation, Korean Presidential Unit Citation, Vietnam Presidential Unit Citation and a Navy Combat Ribbon.
Reverend Houseal said, “Of all the places I have been, there is nothing like coming into port and seeing the American flag waving in the breeze and your wife waiting on the pier.” He worked at TRW in Columbus, Georgia eight years. The Lord called Jim to preach in 1984 and he preached for 34 years. Rev. Houseal served at Tyson Memorial United Methodist Church.
Survivors include his wife of 57 years, Estelle Mary Palmer Houseal of Moultrie; sister-in-law, Christine Houseal of Augusta, GA.; niece, Alice Houseal Vinson and Jim of California; nephew, W.B. Houseal and Pat of Birmingham, AL.; great nieces, Christine Anderson and Frank of Augusta, GA., Conette Blake Houseal and husband Nick of Atlanta.