by Bruce Dover
James Buckberry was many things to many people. He was a caring and loving father…”hard on the outside, but good on the inside”, to his son Justin. He was a proud grandfather to Owen and had just been told, about a week before he died, that there was another grandchild on the way. To his co-workers at Dell and elsewhere, he went by the nickname of “London”. In conversation, he was always ready with a witty comeback, followed by a big smile and laugh.
To those of us who worked with him through SCCA, he was a conscientious Starter with a penchant for enforcing pit out blend line violations. He even had custom shirts printed with “Don’t Violate Me” on the front, along with a diagram of the Blend line at pit out. He had one for Carolina Motorsports Park, in Kershaw, SC and one for VIR and loved to attend the morning Driver’s meeting at both tracks to show them off to the drivers and warn them of the consequences for the violation. He served as Chief Starter at both of those tracks. And, drivers knew when they saw him in the Start stand as they rolled down the straightaway looking for a green flag to start their race, that if they weren’t lined up properly, all they’d see was that big cowboy hat shaking back and forth, telling them to go around and try again. To Jamie D., he was a mentor, who helped usher Jamie from raw rookie (and I do mean raw!) all the way to his National license. There were lots of bumps along the way, but James was always there for Jamie. He was a unique individual and he will be sorely missed.