James Isom has already retired from one job. Now after 43 years of performing his second job, he is stepping down to let some younger folks learn the ropes of church music leadership.
Mr. Isom was a music teacher in the McDuffie County School system for 31 years. He retired from there in 1991 but continued to serve in his capacity as music director at Springfield Baptist Church in Thomson, until now.
James Isom (left) thanks members of the McDuffie County Commission for the resolution in his honor Tuesday night as Commission Chairman Charlie Newton listens.
The community and the church are making plans to honor the man who has served both areas for so long. Springfield is hosting a series of events this weekend, and a county resolution was recently signed declaring Feb. 25 as James Isom Day.
"That's just too good to be true," Mr. Isom said of the proclamation.
Mr. Isom is proud of the quality and variety of music that has been presented at the church under his leadership. He has played the piano and conducted many different choirs during his tenure, but he figured he had served long enough.
"I thought I don't want to overstay my time," Mr. Isom said. "é─ÂThe music is doing some changing and things of this nature, and it will give younger people who are musicians at the church to get a chance to develop their skills"
He thanked all the people he had worked with though the years along with Springfield Pastor Fred Favors for their cooperation and dedication to the music program.
"The choir members have been dutiful, and it was a joy to work with them," Mr. Isom said. "Sometimes there comes a time to stop doing some things, but I'll still be in the church."
The festivities honoring Mr. Isom are set to begin on Feb. 25 at 7 p.m with a community-wide banquet in his honor at the Thomson First Baptist Church Fellowship Hall. For tickets to the banquet, call Springfield Baptist Church at 595-5829.
A musical presentation will take place the following day at Springfield Baptist Church at 3 p.m.
The public is invited to attend all of the activities.