Remembering the lives lost to COVID-19: Terrence James, 49, of Galveston, Texas

Terrence James, 49, of Galveston, Texas, died on Feb. 19, 2021, after becoming ill with COVID-19. He is among the more than 565,000 Americans who have succumbed to the disease since the first known fatality in the United States in early 2020.

His wife, Ebony James, told Yahoo News that her husband was a man of faith who loved God and his family fearlessly and that he was also passionate about helping people.

“If someone were to tell him about an issue or concern that they had, he would always listen. He never missed an opportunity to say, ‘OK, let's pray for it right now,” Ebony said, adding that her husband “always made an effort to let people know that he cared.”

Video Transcript


EBONY JAMES: My name is Ebony James and I lost my husband, Terrence James, to COVID-19. Terrence James was a wonderful husband. He was my best friend. We went everywhere together. We prayed together every morning before we went to work. Every night we prayed together.

He was a person who never met a stranger. He was always very, very, friendly with everyone. He was a prayer warrior. If you needed prayer or you needed sound advice, you could call on Terrence. Terrence always found the good in somebody.

When Terrence and I met, we worked at the same school. Terrence and I would see each other in the hallway, but at that particular time I really didn't pay any attention to him at all, and I don't think he did me, either. It came about where another teacher came to me and said that Mr. James is interested in you. I thought me? He's interested in me? Not knowing that she had gone to him and had said, oh, Ebony Taylor is interested in you, even though I never expressed any interest in him at all. And so he thought I was interested in him and vise versa. So we ended up exchanging numbers. We dated for two years. December 11, 2020 became our 10-year anniversary, so we were together for 12 years.

Terrence was an awesome, awesome, father who spent every moment he could with all of his children. He was just an all around dad. I think that he spoiled the kids because he fixed breakfast every Saturday morning. They sat down at the table. He fixed their plates. Just an awesome man that was dedicated to his family.

Terrence was a music person. He was a radio producer all the way back in college. That was something that he did as a part-time job. He absolutely loved it. Terrence used to be a Community In Schools manager. It's a resource program to help at-risk youth. That propelled him to open up his own non-profit organization, which was called Leaders Of Tomorrow. And he worked with urban boys and basically took them to different adventures. Took them to the capital, took them places where they ordinarily wouldn't get an opportunity to go.

So by then, we were married and I kept telling him, well, you can also impact those kids who don't want to be part of your group in a classroom. And so he went back to school. So proud of him. And he became a social studies teacher while still managing his non-profit group. I just really got to see him blossom within just this past year. He worked in a school with a wonderful group of people who just grew him even more as a teacher.

Me and my husband both ended up in the hospital with COVID. His nurse actually came to my room and she said, I just wanted to meet you, she said, because your husband talks about you and ya'lls kids all the time and she said I wanted to put a name with the face. She said I wanted to meet the person that Terrence constantly said how much he loved.

I would most certainly say to cherish your family. Cherish what time that you do have with them. You don't know when the last day is the last day. I would also say constantly walk in forgiveness and constantly walk in love. It's a beauty to be able to not have to look back and say, I wish I would have. I wish I could have. I don't have that. I just have the beauty of our relationship, and I would most certainly say being married to a larger than life person who could love me and love my children and treat us so wonderfully is something that I'll cherish for the rest of my life.