James was born on August 27, 1951 to Herbert E brink and Gladys Hyatt Brink in Plainview, Texas. He was active in sports and art during his younger years. Upon graduating Lubbock High School in 1970 he entered the US army serving in Special Forces Paratroopers. He went on many mission trips to Vietnam and Cambodia. Exiting active duty army in 1973, he remained in the army reserves for he next 16 years. He attended Texas Tech University for several years.
He is survived y one sister Charlene Lewis and brother-in-law Bill Lewis. One nephew Shawn Lewis and two nieces, Heather Barton and Mandy Lewis.
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