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James L. Cravens, 75, Campbellsville, KY (1939-2015)

South Central Kentucky has lost a giant among Kentucky journalists. He is most prominently remembered for establishing the Central Kentucky News to serve Taylor, Green and Adair Counties. He was a veteran, a highly educated man, a Mason and a Shriner, the longest serving member on the Salvation Army Board in Kentucky and Tennessee, and a leading figure in public service, including a stint a Judge Pro-Tem for Taylor County for 10 years. He was a native of Casey County, KY, a graduate of Liberty High School there, and of Campbellsville College. His wife of 54 years, Betty Ship Cravens, survives. He leaves on direct living descendant, a son, Byron Cravens. He professed faith in Christ and was a member of St. Mark United Methodist Church.
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James L. Cravens of Campbellsville, son of the late Willie Cecil Cravens and Sylvia June Grider Cravens, was born July 4, 1939, in Cincinnati, Ohio. He died at 9:32amET, Monday, June 22, 2015 in Hodgenville, KY.

The funeral service will be at 10amCT/11amET, Thursday, June 25, 2015 at the Parrott & Ramsey Funeral Home, 418 Lebanon Avenue, Campbellsville, KY, by Dr. James Jones. Burial will be in Brookside Cemetery, W Main Street, Campbellsville, KY. Visitation will be 4pm-7pmCT, Wednesday, June 24, 2015 at Parrott & Ramsey Funeral Home.

He professed faith in Christ and was a member of St. Mark United Methodist Church.

He served his country honorably in the United States Air Force. He was a 1957 graduate of Liberty High School and a graduate of Campbellsville College with a Bachelor of Science Degree in History with a minor in English. He also had undergraduate hours from Eastern Kentucky University in Police Administration.

He worked in radio as advertising manager from 1961 - 1963, was employed at the News Journal from 1963 - 1964, owner and publisher of Central Kentucky News from 1964 - 1974, editor and publisher of Central Kentucky News Journal from 1974 - 1978, formerly executive Director of the Campbellsville and Lebanon Housing Authorities, Judge Pro-Tem for Taylor County from 1968 - 1978 and Deputy Coroner for Taylor County for twenty-five years.

He was a member of Pitman Lodge #124 F & A M in Campbellsville, the Scottish Rite Temple in Louisville and Kosair Shrine Temple in Louisville and the Lebanon, Kentucky Chamber of Commerce.

He was the longest serving member on the Salvation Army Board in Kentucky and Tennessee, Chairman of Metro-Police Merit Board from 1981 - 1987, Metro Police Merit Board from 1974 - 1987, 1978 Sigma Delta Chi, Director of Kentucky Press Association from 1973 - 1978, President of Kentucky Weekly Newspaper Association in 1974, Member of Juvenile Justice Commission from 1977 - 1978, Member of State Crime Commission from 1978 - 1982, Vice President, Section 8 from 1991 - 1992, Vice President Public Housing from 1992 - 1993, Vice-Chairman of Housing Legislative Committee, Kentucky Housing Legislative Committee Chairman from 1991 - 1996, Southeastern Regional Conference NAHRO Representative for State of Kentucky in 1998 - 1999, Treasurer, Kentucky Housing Association from 1993 - 1994, Secretary of Kentucky Housing Association from 1994 - 1995, Vice- President of Kentucky Housing Association from 1995 - 1996 and President of Kentucky Housing Association from 1996 - 1997.

He united in marriage to Betty Shipp November 24, 1961.

Besides his wife, Betty Shipp Cravens, of Campbellsville, KY he is survived by the following:
  • One son and daughter-in-law: Byron & Carol Cravens of Campbellsville, KY

  • Two sisters: Sharon Pierce and husband, Jerry and Karen Kinnaird and husband, Frank of Liberty, KY

  • Several nieces and nephews and many other relatives and friends.
He was also preceded in death by a brother, Danny Joe Cravens.

Send condolences to the family of James L. Cravens

The Parrott & Ramsey Funeral Home, 418 Lebanon Avenue, Campbellsville, KY, in charge of arrangements.

This story was posted on 2015-06-24 00:44:50
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