James (Butch) Reynolds, 98, died peacefully at home in Cranston, R.I. on October 17, 2020, surrounded by family. He was predeceased by his wife, Anna M. (Warburton) Reynolds. He was born in Providence, R.I. on Dec. 7, 1921, to James J. Reynolds and Leah C. Melvin.
Butch was well known in local sports circles, having managed ice rinks, owned and operated sports shops and refereed high school and college hockey. He was a past President of the R.I. Hockey Association. He was also a founding member of the Edgewood Youth Hockey Association. He played hockey for the R.I. Scarlets, precursor to the R.I. Reds. He attended St. Paul’s School and was a 1940 graduate of LaSalle Academy and Edgewood Community College. In April, 1943, after World War II started, he joined the United States Army, where he served with distinction in the 85th Division of the Field Artillery in North Africa and Italy. As a gunner he was awarded the Bronze Star, and Good Medal Conduct Medal, the European-African-Middle Eastern Theater Campaign Ribbon and three Campaign Stars. He was honorably discharged in 1945. In 2011, he and other R.I. war veterans were flown to Wash. D.C. on Honor Flight Bravo to be saluted for their service to the nation.
After the war, he married and settled in Warwick, where he worked as a Purchasing Agent for SEALOL in Warwick, then as Manager of the Ice Bowl in the old Shipyard in Cranston. He later owned and operated Jim Reynolds Sporting Goods shop in East Greenwich for many years. He was a communicant of St. Catherine’s church in Warwick and St. Paul’s in Cranston. He was a member of the Pawtuxet Athletic Club in Cranston, where he has many close friends who have supported him in past years.
He is survived by five children: Barry of Montréal, Canada, Kathleen (Percival) of West Greenwich, Christine (Pettit) of College Station, TX., Michael, of Sea Girt, N.J and Leah, of Cranston. He is also survived by nine grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren. He was brother to the late Eileen Reynolds (Hindle), John M. Reynolds and George A. Reynolds.
Due to current Covid restrictions, funeral arrangements will be private.
Donations to the R.I. Hope and Palliative Care or to R.I Veterans Association will be appreciated.