He was a member of the First United Methodist Church of Three Rivers for more than 50 years and a member of the Evergreen Masonic Lodge of Three Rivers 50 years. He belonged to the Live Oak County VFW.
After retiring he joined the Beeville Racing Pigeon Club and was also a member of San Antonio Shriners Organization.
James was born on Nov. 11, 1931, to Pleasant and Josie B (Younts) Payne in Beeville.
He married Ruby Samford Sept. 16, 1965, and had been married for 46 years.
He was preceded in death by his parents, his first wife Dorothy (Veselka) Payne, and a son Tommy Stark.
Survivors include his wife, Ruby Payne of Three Rivers, four daughters Nancy and husband Michael Coquat, Sharon Jones, all of Three Rivers, Rita and husband Allen Trojcak of Refugio, andKaren Brown of Austin; a son Roy Allen Payne of Woodsboro; three stepsons, Fred Stark III and wife Christine of Beeville, Earl Stark and wife Linda of West Columbia, and James Stark and wife Monica of Tuleta; two brothers Allison (Myrna) Payne of Woodsboro and Robert (Marie) Payne of Sea Brook; 17 grandchildren; 9 great-grandchildren; and 1 great- great- granddaughter.
Visitation was held Tuesday, Dec. 13, from 5-8 p.m. at Roberson Funeral Home in Three Rivers,.
Services were conducted Wednesday, Dec.14, at 10 a.m. at the First United Methodist Church in Three Rivers, with the Rev. Harry West officiating the service.
Burial was in the Three Rivers Cemetery, Three Rivers.
Services were entrusted to Roberson Funeral Home, Three Rivers.