Obituary: James Paradies

Obituary: James Paradies

"Mr. Jimmy" was a co-founder of the chain of airport stores that today is Paradies Lagardère.

James Norton Paradies passed away Friday, Dec. 22, 2017.

Born April 20, 1931, in Atlanta to I.J. and Sara Paradies, he grew up in Druid Hills, the youngest of five children. Jimmy attended Druid Hills High School, where he played baseball and basketball with great zeal.

Always a gifted student, he began attending Washington & Lee University at the young age of 16. He relished his W&L years and the lifetime friendships he made. He was active in all aspects of student life, including his role as sports editor of the W&L Ring-tum Phi, a member of the Honor Council and the student body vice president his senior year.

After graduation, Jimmy joined the Navy, then moved back to Atlanta to launch his career, joining his father, I.J., and brother, Dan, in various retail businesses. Jimmy met the love of his life, the former Judy Friedman, in 1960, and after he declared that he was “very fond” of her, they married and embarked upon a 44-year romance.

Jimmy Paradies

Jimmy later joined brother Dan in the startup of Paradies Airport Shops, an airport retail business, which was founded in 1960 with a toy store at the former Atlanta municipal airport. Today the business flourishes as Paradies Lagardère, which operates throughout North America. While Jimmy was the finance mastermind behind the family business, his real pride was in working alongside two of his children, Gregg and Jill Paradies, and growing the company’s strong family culture. Known as “Mr. Jimmy,” he was beloved by all who worked for him at Paradies.

Above all else, Jimmy’s family was his life. He lived for his wife, Judy (deceased in 2004), children, grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews. Jimmy is survived by his children, Cindy Paradies and Larry Moscow, Gregg and Beth Paradies, and Jill Paradies; his grandchildren, Dorrie, Brooke, Katie, Alex, Nikki, Molly, Kelsie and Jason; and his sisters, Doris Haber and Janice Shoob.

Sign the online guestbook at The funeral was held at Ahavath Achim Synagogue on Tuesday, Dec. 26, with the burial following at Arlington Memorial Park. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Judy and Jimmy Paradies Fund for Childhood Enrichment at Ahavath Achim Synagogue or the James N. Paradies Scholarship Fund at Washington & Lee University. Arrangements by Dressler’s Jewish Funeral Care, 770-451-4999.

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