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James Samuel Attaya

James Samuel Attaya

April 9, 2019

James Samuel Attaya, 90, of Denton, Texas, passed away on April 9, 2019 in Denton. He was born on July 2, 1928 in Picayune, Mississippi to Saleem and Tameena (Naher) Attaya.

He attended “Ole Miss” on a football scholarship and graduated with a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in Geology and Petroleum Engineering.

His professional career included working for Shell Oil Company, and as an independent oil and gas geologist, a real estate investor and broker. He also was the first civilian to obtain a civilian helicopter (rotor) license. He married Nina Macdonald on February 14, 1951, in Picayune.

He and his family moved to Denton in 1968 and joined Asbury United Methodist Church in Denton and were lifelong members. He was a devoted Christian. He loved the outdoors, he enjoyed living and working on the family farm in Sanger and working with livestock. He was a big sports fan.

He is survived by his wife, Nina Attaya; daughters, Becky Thompson and husband Neal of Bullard, Texas, Gretchen Hooper and her significant other, Kevin Jones of Providence Village, Texas;, Vicki Saxon and her husband Joey of Krugerville, Texas, Miriam Weddle and her husband, Randy, of Denton; sons, James Attaya of Denton and Bart Attaya and wife Lisa of Wichita Falls, Texas; brother, Moses Attaya of Conroe, Texas; grandchildren, Clint Hooper, Emily Bingham, Katy Steinberger, Natalie Attaya, Shelby Saxon, Sadie Saxon, Ryan Crady; and four great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his mother and father; sisters, Victoria Spiers, Christine Alix, Sadie Rapp, Selma Smith and Freeda Smith; brother, Fred Attaya; grandson, Cody Attaya; great-grandchildren, Kole and Chip Steinberger.

The family will receive family and friends on Friday, April 12, 2019 from 1-2 p.m. at DeBerry Funeral Directors in Denton, Texas. Funeral Services will follow at 2:00 p.m. in the Chapel of DeBerry Funeral Directors. Interment will follow at Sanger Cemetery in Sanger, Texas.

In lieu of flowers, please make a memorial contribution to Denton Good Samaritan Village or The Salvation Army.