- About Us
Jim was truly a self-made man…“The Original Marlboro Man”. As a young man he proudly served in the United States Navy. He met and married his sweetheart, Carolyn McFadden, March 13, 1964. They welcomed two daughters into their small family. Because Jim had only an eighth grade education, Jim and Carolyn made their girls’ education their priority. This goal fueled their drive to open their own company. Jim and Carolyn started Gaines Construction Company, Inc. in Ft. Smith in the early 1980s. It was through their sheer determination and perseverance that this natural gas pipeline company became an overwhelming success not only providing on-going education for their children and grandchildren but providing the stability that Jim had wanted for his family.
Jim met Carol Armstrong through mutual friends. After the passing of both their spouses from long-term illnesses, Jim and Carol each thought that life was hopeless. They soon discovered the hope of love and laughter again over a cup of coffee. Over their nine years together, Jim and Carol both made it their goal “to stop and smell the roses”. Jim and Carol succeeded by not only just living but enjoying laughter and love in their years together.
He was preceded in death by his mother, Martha Ann O’Neal Gaines; his first wife of over 40 years, Carolyn in 2004; one brother and three sisters
He is survived by his wife of 9 years, Carol Lindsey Armstrong Gaines; two daughters, Betsy Kinkade of Rogers, Karla Hunt and husband, Tim of Rogers; Step Children, J. Armstrong of Springdale, Julie Marvin of Poteau Oklahoma ;two brothers, Joe Gaines of Fort Walton Beach, Florida, Bill Gaines and his wife, Lorene of South Carolina and one sister, Reba Underwood of Mountain Home, Arkansas; grandchildren, Harrison Stanfill of Fayetteville, Addison Stanfill and his fiancé, Sydney Arend of Houston, Texas, Amanda Brummett and her husband, Alex of Little Rock, Collin Hunt of Memphis, Tennessee, Jacob Marvin of Poteau, Oklahoma, Jennifer Marvin of Poteau, Oklahoma and great-grandaughter, Keni’Lynn Marvin of Poteau, Oklahoma.
James A. Gaines…Jim, Jimmy, Husband, Dad, Pappaw, Friend…whatever you might have called him…no one who ever met him was quite the same…truly all who knew him loved him. From years ago to just this week…from his kind words or witty sense of humor to his crazy “Jimisms” that grandsons say deserve their own book…he leaves a legacy of love, faith, laughter, and strength