Paul James Mansfield was born Nov. 28, 1929, on Thanksgiving Day at John Sealey Hospital in Galveston, Texas. His parents were Norman and Virginia Ruth Pigue Mansfield. The family moved permanently from Galveston to Dallas in 1932. Paul graduated from Sunset High School 1947. The summer he was 15 he traveled by train from Dallas to New York and Washington to see the sights by himself. At 16, his Sunset Quartet (later called the Beau Jesters) traveled on behalf of Lyndon Johnson's first primary Senatorial campaign. At 17 he joined a summer sales crew in Dallas in early June to sell stationery throughout the West. He hitchhiked from Portland, Ore. to Los Angeles, Calif., boarding a train to Dallas in time to begin school in September. During school days he found his lifelong love of reading, music and travel.
He attended NTAC (North Texas Agricultural-College), Arlington, Texas from September, 1947, until January, 1950, by hitchhiking between Oak Cliff and Arlington for five semesters. While there Paul was promoted to Lt. Colonel/Battalion Commander in ROTC and elected cheerleader. In January, 1950, Paul entered the University of Texas in Austin, Texas as a Junior and graduated in January, 1952, with a BFA major in radio production, script writing and performance, and a minor in journalism.
In 1950 he married Dallasite Vera Jayne (Palmer) Peers in Fort Worth. They were married until 1955, and had one child, Jayne Marie, who is currently living in Ventura, Calif. During graduation week he was commissioned 2nd Lieutenant, Military Police Corps, U.S. Army Reserve, through ROTC. He had been in ROTC since high school. He then entered active service in March, 1952. He served until December, 1952, at Camp Gordon, Ga. as cadre in the Military Police School there and leader of a training platoon. In January, 1953, he sailed on a troop ship for Korea as a replacement assigned to 8"' Army. The Cease Fire of the United Nations action in Korea occurred in July, 1953, and Paul was assigned to a Military Police unit in August which was posted in Osaka, Japan to protect and serve U.S. servicemen on R&R. He was sent to Fort Bliss, Texas in March, 1954, to muster out of the Army and return to Dallas.
In April, 1954, he moved with Jayne and Jayne Marie to Los Angeles, where he worked with a public relations firm; an usher at Grauman's Chinese Theater in Hollywood, and editor of the Los Angeles News-Advertiser, a weekly newspaper. That year he moved to San Francisco, Calif. to join the News Bureau Staff of Southern Pacific Railroad. In 1955, he was transferred to Houston, Texas, where he served as Assistant Editor and photographer of the monthly employees' magazine of the Texas and New Orleans Lines of the Southern Pacific. In 1956 he joined the corporate staff of Dr. Pepper Company, Dallas. He was assigned as a Merchandiser, working with Dr. Pepper bottling plants east of the Mississippi River, In 1956, he joined the corporate staff of Dr. Pepper Company, Dallas. He was assigned as a Merchandiser, working with Dr. Pepper bottling plants east of the Mississippi River, then promoted to Regional Manager and headquartered in Chattanooga, Tenn. to work with 12 Dr. Pepper plants in Tennessee and North Georgia. Paul was introduced to a young widow, Mary Sue Greer, and her son, Robert Otie Greer, by his Aunt Gerry at Cliff Temple Baptist Church in Dallas, Texas in 1956. They quickly fell in love and were married on June 1, 1957. Paul eagerly adopted Rob, whose name became Robert Greer Mansfield. The family made their new home in Chattanooga, Tenn.
In the nearly 56 years since then, he and Sue have lived in Nashville; Dallas; Macedonia, Ohio; Kingston, N.J. with office in New York City; Temple, Texas; Dallas again; and... presently San Angelo, Texas. They have lived in 11 different homes. Paul spent much of his life in service to others. While a member of Wilshire Baptist Church in Dallas, he was ordained as deacon. He also taught English as a second language and was revered by his students. As a member of First Baptist Church in San Angelo, he created a bus ministry that provided sack lunches to families as they traveled through San Angelo on long-distance trips. He was also heavily involved with the volunteer organization at Baptist Memorials. Paul loved and treasured his precious, beautiful Sue and the life she has made for him. They traveled to Europe and across the United States. They sang together. She made a loving home for him, stood by him in all kinds of weather and nurtured their children and grandchildren.
He is survived by his wife, Sue; children Jayne Marie Fenley Mansfield, Robert Greer Mansfield and wife Miriam (Yum), Paul James Mansfield Jr. and wife Lorie, Jennifer Suzanne Mansfield Peal and husband Tom and Amy Foster Mansfield Babinski and husband Jeffrey; grandchildren Morgan Fenley, Gregory, John and James Mansfield, Nichole and Benjamin Mansfield, Andy Van Horn, and Mary, Alexander (Al) and Ellen Babinski; and great-grandchildren Devin, Taylor and Jo Anna Fenley Clyde Foster Mansfield. Family visitation will be from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday, June 9, 2013, at Robert Massie Funeral Home. Memorial services will be at 2 p.m. Monday, June 10, 2013, in First Baptist Church Chapel with Larry Howard, officiating. Burial of his ashes will be at a later date at Laurel Land Cemetery in Dallas, Texas. Arrangements are with Robert Massie Funeral Home.
Published in GoSanAngelo from June 9 to June 10, 2013
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