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HIGH POINT — James “Jim” Michael Bender, age 61, died of a heart attack on Aug. 21, 2021. Jim was born Dec. 22, 1959 in Winston Salem and spent his childhood in Winston Salem, Greensboro, and two years at Kwajalein in the Marshall Islands. Jim graduated from Walter Hines Page Senior High School in 1979. He attended UNCG and later graduated from High Point University with a degree in Psychology. Jim was a Certified Substance Abuse Counselor and a Certified Criminal Justice Addiction Professional. He spent his adult life trying to help people who struggled with a substance use disorder. Jim’s motto in life was to “help God’s Children” and he did that every chance he could. Jim was a proud member of the 12 Step community in Greensboro and High Point and had connections all over the country and world. He mentored and touched countless lives as he helped many find sobriety and recovery.

The greatest joy in Jim’s life was his son Logan. He was a devoted father and he loved his son fiercely. Jim enjoyed being a part of Logan’s younger years as a Cub Scout and later Boy Scout troop leader. He was Logan’s biggest fan and could be heard loudly cheering on Logan and his teammates as he played basketball, baseball, and Grimsley football and Lacrosse. Jim loved being outdoors and hunting, especially with his son, brother, and nephews. He was a great chef and attended the Culinary Institute of America in NY, worked in many restaurants in Greensboro, and was known for his delicious gravy at Thanksgiving meals. He was also known to love a good competitive game of poker. Jim will be remembered for his infectious laugh, his sense of humor and the fact that he was never boring. He believed in the power of love and compassion, especially towards those suffering from the disease of addiction.

Jim was preceded in death by his father William George Bender, mother Elise Pettitt Bender, and sister Susan Small (Steve). He leaves behind his son Logan Bender (from his marriage to Kimberly Grove), brother Bob Bender (Beth), sister Beth Purcell (Gary), sister Barbara Perillo (Joe), and sister Anne Strickland (Steve). He also leaves behind many nieces and nephews who he loved dearly.

A service to honor Jim’s life will be held Saturday, Sept. 18 at Westminster Presbyterian Church at 1 p.m., 3906 W. Friendly Ave, Greensboro, NC 27410. Covid protocols will be in place.

Jim was especially passionate about helping those incarcerated due to a substance use disorder. Donations may be made to NC District 23, P.O. Box 5125, Greensboro, NC 27435 with a memo to earmark donation to go to CFC (Correctional Facilities Committee) or to substance abuse treatment center of your choice.