He was born Feb. 24, 1930, in Lena, Ind., the son of Ralph and Violet (Bell) Payne.
His first eight grades of school were in a two-room school where he served as custodian in the eighth-grade.
Grades 9-12 were at Van Buren High School. There, he played baseball and basketball and graduated in 1948.
After high school, he worked in a furniture mill and brick factory.
He married Helen Burnett of Brazil Aug. 22, 1950.
He was drafted into the United States Army and served from 1953-54 during the Korean War.
He was in Japan for 23 months and Korea for six months.
He returned home in January 1954, then enrolled at Indiana State University and received a B.S. and M.S. and 30 hours from ISU.
He started teaching in 1958. He taught at Danville, Terre Haute Garfield, Honey Creek and retired in 1997 from Terre Haute South.
As a teacher, he taught woodshop, drafting, DECA and adult night class.
He was preceded in death by his wife Helen, brothers Kenneth Payne and Wendell Payne, sister-in-law Doris (Burnett) Payne and sister Bereneita Payne.
Jim and Helen had two sons, Dr. Michael Payne and wife Kim, Carmel, and David Payne and wife Rani, currently of Afghanistan and formerly of Acworth, Ga.
He is also survived by grandchildren Michael, Steven, Matthew, Natalie, Zachary, Ainsley, Bradley and Britney, brother Rev. Dale Payne, dear friend Marietta Cannady, as well as several nieces, nephews and extended family members.
Services will be at Lawson-Miller Chapel, Brazil, Nov. 3, 2012, at 1 p.m., with his brother Rev. Dale Payne officiating.
Burial will follow at Calcutta Cemetery.
Visitation will be at the funeral home Saturday, from 11 a.m. until time of services.
At the family's request, in lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the American Cancer Society, 5635 W. 96th St., Suite 100, Indianapolis, Ind., 46278.
Visit www.lawson-millerchapel.com to light a candle in his memory.