James William Brown, founder and former President of General Packaging Corporation Passed Away
Monday, December 18, 2017
Posted by: Alyce Ryan
James William Brown, founder and former President of General Packaging Corporation, Richardson, Texas, passed away on Sunday, August 20, 2017.
Jim was born on Jan. 5, 1924 in Biltmore, NC. After attending both Hendersonville High School in Hendersonville, N.C. and Mills River High School in Mills River, NC, Jim attended the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa. He entered the United States Army Air Corp in 1944, in which he served through the end of World War II. During his tenure, Jim flew the AT-6 Trainer and a variety of trainer aircraft before moving over to fly the B-24 “Liberator” Heavy Bomber as a pilot. He later was a primary pilot instructor on the B-24 Bomber at the B-24 Flight Instructional Base located at Tonopah, Nevada. Late in the War years, Jim flew the P-51D Mustang fighter for the armed forces. He received the American Theater Medal and Victory Medal from the Air Force. He received his Honorable Discharge from the military in December, 1945, in Portland, Oregon. Jim was called back into service with the United States Air Force Intelligence Division in 1951 during the Korean War.
In 1946, Jim later attended the University of Texas at Austin on the GI Bill. It was at the University of Texas where he met and married his wife of a lifetime and the true beautiful “love of his life,” the former Beverly Jean Emmett of New Orleans, LA. The young couple attended classes and worked together in the summers for the U.S. Forestry Department as Forest Fire Lookouts at Montana’s Glacier National Park while still college students. The Browns later moved to Dallas, Texas after working on their course work for several years at the University of Texas. They moved to Dallas in 1949; and, Jim went to work for the Cokesbury Book Store in downtown Dallas.
Jim was soon to work, as a young man, for the Permacel Tape Div. of Johnson & Johnson as a commissioned Sales Representative beginning in the early 1950’s-- and the couple bought their first home in the, then, new Casa View section of Dallas. He established high levels of sales performance with the company—as he was a hard working salesman, with considerable people skills – with a young family to support – who sincerely enjoyed people and who cultivated their friendships. After several years, Jim decided to branch out from the big company to start his own small packaging services company – specializing in selling corrugated containers (boxes) and industrial tape products. He named the new start up company General Packaging; and, the company began its operations on Slocum St., west of downtown Dallas, in 1957. The company incorporated within the State of Texas in 1960 as General Packaging Corporation.
For over forty years, Jim had a passion for packaging and loved working with people, both inside the company and the customers he called upon. This translated over time to a company that today employs approximately 200 people across 3 manufacturing facilities – and stands as a living legacy of his many years of hard work and dedication. Jim retired from the active operations of the business in 1999. The company is run by the Brown family today, and they seek to run the company in the same spirit in which Jim lived, driven by his integrity and fairness.
He is survived by his wife Beverly Jean and three sons: James William Brown, III of Dallas; Britt Collier Brown of South Lake Tahoe, Calif., and Jeffery Emmett Brown of Plano, Tex.