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James Lee Ashburn

June 20, 1938 — September 14, 2022

James Lee Ashburn

   James Lee Ashburn, 84, of 124 Horniblow Point Road, passed away on September 14, 2022.

   He is survived by his high school sweetheart and wife of 64 years, Debbie Hauser Ashburn; a daughter, Amy A. Lindsey (Mike) of Raleigh, NC; a son, James Lee Ashburn Jr. (Kim) of Jacksonville, NC; a granddaughter, Kristen Lindsey Shimer (John), two great-grandchildren, Claire Stevens Shimer and John Shimer IV (Jack) all of Raleigh, NC; and a sister, Frances Ashburn Sessoms (Jim) of Knoxville, Tennessee; brother and sister in-law Renfrow and Karen Hauser of Mount Airy, NC, sister in-law Peggy Marsh (Phil) of Mount Airy and many dear nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by a brother-in-law, Gideon Clay Hauser, III.

   Born in Mount Airy on June 20, 1938 to Elizabeth J. and Oliver B. Ashburn, he was a licensed pilot and a professional engineer. A graduate of North Carolina State University with a BS in Electrical Engineering, he spent his working career at Carolina Power and Light (Duke Energy) in Raleigh. Upon retirement he and Debbie moved to Edenton, North Carolina, where they have lived for 19 years.  With his engineering background and endless curiosity about “why and how things worked,” he was a master designer, inventor and handyman as evidenced by numerous home projects and gadgets he would contrive.

   He was an avid outdoorsman and fisherman and belonged to a special group who organized several fly-fishing trips each year. Some of his favorite spots were Yellowstone National Park and the North Carolina mountains and coast.

   His keen wit and love for our family will always be held dear to our hearts. A Celebration of Life will take place at a later date.

   In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to: The Nature Conservancy, ATTN: Treasury, 4245 N. Fairfax Dr., Suite 100, Arlington, Virginia 22203 or for online donations go to

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