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James Tatum talks about Crowder College’s history and its future in connection with planning for the institution’s 50th anniversary. Tatum was involved in the creation of the college and has been a member of the board of trustees for all of those 50 years.

Southwest Missouri has lost a pioneer in James Tatum.

Tatum, 95, died this week. He was one of the founding fathers of Crowder College, which is based in Neosho and has expanded to multiple campuses across the region. One of the college's newest campuses, in McDonald County, is named for Tatum.

“He’s been the heart and soul of Crowder College,” former President Alan Marble said of Tatum in 2013, shortly after Tatum announced his resignation from Crowder's board of trustees after 50 years. “His focus has been on servant leadership, ethical decision-making and moral courage."

Reporter Joe Hadsall will have more on Tatum's legacy, including interviews with those who knew him, in a story at joplinglobe.com and in Thursday's print edition.

We'll also bring you:

  • A story about hundreds of planned job cuts at Butterball in Carthage.
  • An update on a project to repair a helicopter in Neosho that was used by the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War.
  • The latest advice from the Better Business Bureau.

Have a great evening. Stay safe.

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Emily Younker is the managing editor at the Joplin Globe. Contact: eyounker AT joplinglobe DOT com.