James "Jim" Seavor
Seavor, James L. (Jim) 80, passed away in the arms of his husband on Friday August 26, 2016. He was the son of the late Thomas W. and Genevieve (Lyons) Seavor, brother of the late Thomas W. Seavor Jr. and was also the nephew of the late Anna J. and Catherine E. Lyons and Mary McElroy. A Rhode Island native, Jim was a graduate of Cranston High School East and Boston University. He joined the news department of the then Providence Journal owned radio stations WEAN-AM and WPJB-FM in 1960. It was there he began reviewing theater, film and interviewing authors. When the Journal sold the stations, Jim moved to the features department where he continued writing about the arts and just about anything else that came his way. (As he once wrote, “I became a kind of ‘Give it to Jim. He writes anything’ guy.”) In 1981, Jim accompanied the Trinity Repertory Company to India – the first-stop on a government-sponsored tour of India and Syria. In recalling that journey, Jim was most impressed with the temple to Elephanta, an island shrine off the coast of Bombay…“It was a place that truly reminded me that the Creator, in all his forms, is everywhere.” His 40-year career included interviews with such celebrities as John Huston, Betty Hutton, Frank Sinatra Jr., Lauren Bacall, and countless others. In 1976, Ruth Gordon told Jim that his interview was the best she ever had and sent him this note: “For Jim, who asked me such great questions and made our interview a treat!” Jim had an enormous love for theater and the performing arts and attended every show he could, the last being “Sister Act” at Theatre By The Sea on Friday August 19, 2016. Once when the musical “Cats” was in town at PPAC, Jim was transformed into a ‘Jellicle Cat’ through the magic of theatre costume and makeup. When “Peter Pan” flew in, he went ‘flying’ with Peter Pan’s Cathy Rigby. Jim always appreciated the many kindnesses given to him by Trinity Rep, Providence Performing Arts Center, Ocean State Theatre Company, 2nd Story Theatre, as well as Theatre By The Sea. In 2015 he received the Producer’s Circle Award for his passionate advocacy for the arts from the Rhode Island International Film Festival. In reviewing theatre productions he always looked for something positive to say even when a performance was not the stellar dream a theatre company had hoped for. Among friends and familiar faces though, he had a mischievous sense of humor but never hurtful. Jim was a strong advocate for AIDS awareness and passionate about the AIDS Quilt Memorial, personally requesting and financing panel displays. He also was the instrument which brought the first Drag Queen Show to St. Peter’s and St. Andrew’s Church, which took in much needed funds for their Food Panty and Soup Kitchen. It has since become an annual event. In these last few years the struggles were difficult, but he never complained. If you talked to him on the phone you would never have known that he had any problems. He worked valiantly to ward off challenges caused by the illnesses and for a long period of time was quite successful. But in the end the storms within surged and were too strong to overcome. Thank you to Dr. Shahid Khan, Dr. Daniel Levine, Dr. William Corrao, and Dr. Daniel Dragomire for their years of constant care and concern. Know that you made a huge difference. Thank you also to Rossie Harris for making a regular day very special for Jim. You have no idea how happy he was. Thank you to Arthur Thomas for bringing communion to Jim when he was unable to attend mass. And thank you to Robert Sheeran and Richard Muto for being there during those last hours. Surely Jim felt your presence. Thank you also to Diana Arcand for always helping at a moments notice, when times were challenging or quite overwhelming. You went above and beyond the call of kindness. Thank you to Rev. Joyce Penfield for blessing Jim as he left us. And to all those who may have shown even the tiniest amount of sunshine to Jim, even if you thought it insignificant, know that it wasn’t. On earth, Jim Seavor was one of the kindest, gentlest, generous, caring, compassionate souls that God ever created. He is survived and shall be forever missed by his husband Gregory Mallane until they are united once again. He was the brother-in-law of Anthony Mallane, Stephen and Dorothy Mallane and Juliette and Henry Russo. Jim is also survived by a family of close friends, cousins, nephews and nieces. A Requiem Mass to celebrate Jim’s life will be held Saturday September 3, 2016 at 10:00 AM in St. Peter’s and St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church 25 Pomona Avenue Providence. Relatives and friends are invited to attend. Following a request from Jim please bring a feather to wear or hold. Visiting hours will be held on Friday September 2, 2016, from 5:00 to 7:30pm in The Butterfield Chapel 500 Pontiac Avenue Cranston. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in Jim’s memory to any arts organization, health organization, charitable organization or any no-kill animal rescue/shelter of your choosing.
Cathy Gorman - 08/30/2016
So sorry for your loss.
I never knew Jim, but wish I did. Let perpetual light shine upon him. John Gilgun, RI Senate, retired.
Kenneth Dulgarian - 08/31/2016
Jim's gift to bring sunshine to those that crossed in his path where the lucky ones.
Always respectful, gracious, selfless, and professional.
Gregory and extended family, may your wonderful memories of Jim keep you strong.
Mr & Mrs Anthony Weave - 09/01/2016
Our deepest sympathy to you Greg and the Seavor family.
We met Jim at family functions, he had a nice smile and friendly personality. We are sadenned by his loss. We send our deepest sympathies to Greg ,who was dedicated to making Jim and their life together happy and eventful xo Kathy and Mike
Vicky Farley - 09/02/2016
My sincerest condolences Greg. He truly sounds like an amazing man, and I wish I had the pleasure of knowing him. You are in our thoughts and prayers.
Joanne Fayan - 09/03/2016
Dear Greg, much love and sympathy to you on Jim's passing. I feel blessed knowing him these many years as a professional critic and a dear man. My heart is with you.
jeffrey a oakland - 09/05/2016
I had the great pleasure and privilege of working with Jim in the early 80s at WEAN. Whether he was arriving early Sunday morning as I was wrapping a 6 night overnight shift or recounting his trip with Trinity to India you always felt glad to be in his company. To Greg and all of Jim's family I give you my deepest condolences and prayers.