James “Jim” Whatley, Jr.

MATTHEWS, SC; James “Jim” Edward Whatley, Jr. of Matthews, North Carolina, passed away peacefully March 21, 2021, at the age of 82. Mr. Whatley was born in Edgefield, South Carolina, on November 22, 1938. He was the son of the late James Edward Whatley, Sr. and Elizabeth Crim Whatley and brother to the late Betty Whatley Satcher Jones.
Mr. Whatley graduated from Johnston High School, Johnston, SC ,where he played varsity football and basketball. He was voted “Most Dependable” by his senior classmates.
He attended the University of South Carolina in Columbia and served his fraternity (Pi Kappa Phi) as Chaplain, Historian, and President. Prior to graduation, Mr. Whatley transferred to the American University in Washington D.C. While completing his education, he worked as a “fingerprint specialist” with the FBI and later as U.S. Capitol Hill Policeman. Jim graduated from the American University with a degree in Government and Political Science.
After graduating, Mr. Whatley returned to South Carolina and married his high school sweetheart, Susan Self Wood of Parksville, SC. 
Mr. Whatley had been a member of the National Guard since he was seventeen years old and at age twenty-five and wanting to serve his county, he applied for a “Direct Appointment” to become an Army Officer and was commissioned a 2nd Lt. In the Military Police Corp and ordered to active duty. After attending OSC (Officer Candidate School) at Fort Gordon, Georgia, Lt. Whatley was assigned to a Military Police unit in Karlsruhe, Germany as a Platoon Leader.
After being promoted to 1st Lieutenant, he became Company Commander with platoons in Karlsruhe, Heidelberg and Heilbronn. Upon his return to the states, he continued to serve in the Reserves and retired with twenty-one years of service as a Lieutenant Colonel. He was also a graduate of the Army Command and General Staff College, Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas. He was active in both the American Legion and the VFW.
As a civilian, Mr. Whatley’s career was in Dental Sales and later in Orthopedic Medical Sales. As a professional Orthopedic Specialist, Mr. Whatley would assist surgeons in the O.R. with both product and equipment knowledge during procedures. 
After thirty years of marriage, his wife, Susan passed away unexpectedly to an aneurism. Jim and Susan were blessed with two daughters, Vonda and Misty.
Years later, Mr. Whatley married Aana Lisa Johnson of Matthews, NC, who had lost her husband several years before. Their daughters played the role of match makers in getting them together. Later, both parties sold their properties and moved into Plantation Estates, a retirement community which they both loved. Living at Plantation Estates afforded them the opportunity to spend their summers in Montana.
While living at Plantation Estates, Mr. Whatley organized a Veteran’s group consisting of all branches of service. He promoted and facilitated programs with guest speakers as well as took disabled veterans to appointments at the local V.A. Health Center and the V.A. Hospital in Salisbury, NC. Mr. Whatley loved his country, his fellow veterans, and the military.
Mr. Whatley was a member of Central Church of God and was a former member of the First Baptist Church in Johnston, South Carolina.
Mr. Whatley will be remembered as a loving husband, father, grandfather and loyal friend. He is survived by his wife, AanaLisa Whatley. He is survived by his two daughters, Vonda Whatley McCoy and daughter McCaul, as well Misty Whatley Howard, her husband Carl and their children, Chase and Melissa.
A visitation will be held from 1:00 pm until 2:00 pm on Sunday, March 28, 2021 at Central Church in the Family Life Center, 5301 Sardis Road, Charlotte, NC followed by a Celebration of Life Service held at 2:00 pm. At the request of the family, a private burial service will be held.
McEwen Funeral Home is serving the family of Mr. Whatley. Online condolences may be made at www.mcewenminthillchapel.com.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Camp Canaan (a children’s Christian Camp), 3111 Sand Island Road, Rock Hill, SC 29732 or the Samaritan Fund, 733 Plantation Estates Drive, Matthews, NC 28105.