One of James “Jim” Du Bose’s favorite phrases was, “Family is everything.”
You should know that Jim had a generous and broad definition of family.
When he joined the ranks of the Newark Police Department at age 29, the brotherhood in blue became his family.
Later in the early 1990s when he joined the Essex County Sheriff’s Department, Jim’s family that he protected and served expanded outside his hometown of Newark to the 21 other municipalities in the county.
During the intervening years, Jim made New Community his home and he made all of us his family.
I had known Jim for many years and learned early on that he tended to be a reserved person. He let his actions speak louder than his words.
Jim developed a tremendously positive reputation among residents living in the public housing projects while he was a police officer, which made him a perfect fit for taking the reins as New Community’s director of security. It was clear that Jim could handle himself. He wouldn’t be intimidated.
Meanwhile, Jim faithfully contributed to the scholarship fund, writing a check each month to support youngsters attending prep schools. He continued even after he retired from NCC.
In his later years, Jim’s passion for black history continued to serve the community he so dearly loved. His interest in the great stories of blacks who achieved things in the face of adversity—such as Edith Sampson, the first black woman ever elected as judge in Illinois, or the distinguished engineer J. Ernest Wilkins, Jr., who earned his doctorate in mathematics at age 19—allowed readers of the Clarion to peek into the past to gain knowledge and inspiration for the future.
It was Jim’s idea to run a monthly column in the Clarion and I was all for it. Even when he moved down to North Carolina after retirement to be near his family, Jim’s connection to us—his other family—remained strong. His family had become the readership of this newsletter, which reaches all across the country.
He was a very exceptional human being. Thank you for everything, Jim. You are greatly missed.