James G. Cochran ’62

James G. Cochran ’62 died April 17, 2014, in Charlotte, N.C. He was born in Detroit on July 30, 1940, and graduated from Darien (Conn.) High School. He was a member of Psi Upsilon fraternity and Bowdoin Glee Club, and was a dean’s list student.

He went on to earn a master of business administration from Columbia University in 1966, followed by a career in marketing and sales at TWA, United Airlines, PCA, Southern Bell and AT&T. He served to specialist fourth class in the Army. He served as president of the board of UMAR, a non-profit that benefits people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, for whom he was a tireless fundraiser and supporter. He also was a long-time member of the Providence Rotary Club, where he served as board president. For a decade, he mentored a boy at a local elementary school. He sang in the choir at First Presbyterian Church in Charlotte. The quintessential environmentalist, he chained himself and his son, Webb, to a tree in the 1970s, which led to the preservation of the still-tree-lined street. Later, he served on the Charlotte Tree Advisory Commission, which supports the city’s leafy canopy. He was diagnosed with multiple myeloma in 2006. He was a long time member of the Olde Providence Racquet Club, and a recent golf enthusiast at Carolina Golf Club. He danced with the Nine O’Clocks, attended Senior Scholars and pursued woodworking and photography with gusto. His love of inquiry regarding matters of conscience and faith led him to the Bible Work Bench Study Group. He also had a deep connection to the sea and built a sunfish in high school. Several years ago, he fulfilled a lifelong dream to crew on The Staad Amsterdam, a clipper ship that crossed the Atlantic the long way. He recorded the journey with photos and a narrative published in the local newspaper. He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Robin Oates Holt Cochran; son Webb MacDuffie Cochran; daughter Bonnie Blackwood Cochran; two grandsons; brother David Cochran, and sister Margie Kelly Cochran.


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