SFA reacts to death of homeless student - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

SFA reacts to death of homeless student

NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) -  In today's society, some would consider the homeless as people without significant identity, but James Gray, who passed away in a pew at St.Mary's Chapel, was far from that.

"A lot of people knew Jim. Jim was a very unique guy,"said Thomas Magnuson, a former SFA student. 

He was known as Jim by everyone.

Jim spent most of his time in student ministries, like the Wesley Foundation, creating close relationships with many students at SFA.  He wasn't a strange man, but he was a friend.  

"We don't want to be with you because we feel sorry for you. We just want to be with you,"Magnuson said. 

What many didn't know was though Jim laid his head in churches and in ministries majority of the time,  he was a student at SFA interested in the sciences.  He often engaged in conversations about school at his favorite places in town. Java Jacks was one of his favorites. 

"Jim had several Bachelor's degrees and a Master's degree.  He'd been going to this school for sometime,"said Magnuson. 

SFA students visited a condolences  page online to share their thoughts of Jim.  One read,"I don't think you realized how much your friendship meant to me, especially being so far away from home." 

"He made an impact on people in the sense that I think Jim really taught people how to love,"said Magnuson. 

He says Gray hung with the younger crowd because they probably accepted them better than a crowd his age. Magnuson says Jim's passing was a tragedy to many at SFA, but SFA students in the ministry had one prayer. 

"We pray that at some point before he died, he received Christ,"said Magnuson. 

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